Saturday

19th Aug 2017

Prodi to explain why Euro Pact is 'stupid'

Commission President Romano Prodi has accepted the invitation of the European Parliament political groups to address a debate on the Stability Pact in the Strasbourg plenary session on Monday, even though the Commission is already going to be represented by Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Pedro Solbes. Although the European Parliament said that this debate had been foreseen for some time, it said that it wanted to give Mr Prodi a chance to clarify "apparent misunderstandings" after he recently referred to the Stability Pact as being "stupid".

Credibility of Stability Pact being tested

President Prodi on Friday 18 October received letters from the President of the political groups in the European Parliament asking him to address Monday's debate on the Stability pact. President of the Christian Democrats, Hans-Gert Pöttering expressed "great astonishment and disbelief" at Mr Prodi's comments on Thursday, saying it was a "grave mistake" which could "cause great damage to the European currency and undermine the economic and political trust in it."

Solbes: Stability Pact flexible enough

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now and get 40% off for an annual subscription. Sale ends soon.

  1. €90 per year. Use discount code EUOBS40%
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

EU Commission President Prodi had commented against a strict implementation of the Stability and Growth Pact. However this left the economic affairs Commissioner Solbes trying to dismiss the rigidity of the Pact. "With various initiatives over the last three years the Commission has proved that the Stability and Growth Pact is flexible enough to accommodate policies that make economic sense. Of course no flexibility can accommodate bad economic policies," he said on Friday in Barcelona.

Hans-Gert Pöttering said in his letter that the Commission President's remarks reveal the obvious split within the Commission and its loss of independence from pressures of some larger member states. "If you feel that the right of initiative enables the Commission to depart from the unanimous decision taken on the Stability Pact without even consulting the European Parliament, this clearly demonstrates a breach of confidence which cannot stand uncommented," said Mr Pöttering in his letter.

Enrique Barón Crespo, the European Socialist President, also sent a letter to President Prodi on Friday, asking him to attend the debate in Strasbourg on Monday "in order to explain, in public and before the Parliament, your position on this issue, and to bring the debate into its inter-institutional context."

Airbnb too 'different' to pay EU tax

US home rental firm said its “model is unique” because most of the money stays in pockets of local people, as France and Germany prepare EU tax crackdown.

Greece looking at bond market return

Greece could issue 3-year bonds as early as this week, for the first time in three years, amid mixed signs from its creditors and rating agencies.

EU cautious with German diesel plan

The European Commission welcomed the German carmakers' pledge to update software in diesel cars, but is waiting for details on how emissions will be reduced.

News in Brief

  1. Macedonia sacks top prosecutor over wiretap scandal
  2. ECB concerned stronger euro could derail economic recovery
  3. Mixed Irish reactions to post-Brexit border proposal
  4. European Union returns to 2 percent growth
  5. Russian power most feared in Europe
  6. Ireland continues to refuse €13 billion in back taxes from Apple
  7. UK unemployment lowest since 1975
  8. Europe facing 'explosive cocktail' in its backyard, report warns

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceDoes Genetics Explain Why So Few of Us Have an Ideal Cardiovascular Health?
  2. EU2017EEFuture-Themed Digital Painting Competition Welcomes Artists - Deadline 31 Aug
  3. ACCABusinesses Must Grip Ethics and Trust in the Digital Age
  4. European Jewish CongressEJC Welcomes European Court of Justice's Decision to Keep Hamas on Terror List
  5. UNICEFReport: Children on the Move From Africa Do Not First Aim to Go to Europe
  6. Centre Maurits CoppietersWe Need Democratic and Transparent Free Trade Agreements Says MEP Jordi Solé
  7. Counter BalanceOut for Summer, Ep. 2: EIB Promoting Development in Egypt - At What Cost?
  8. EU2017EELocal Leaders Push for Local and Regional Targets to Address Climate Change
  9. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceMore Women Than Men Have Died From Heart Disease in Past 30 Years
  10. European Jewish CongressJean-Marie Le Pen Faces Trial for Oven Comments About Jewish Singer
  11. ACCAAnnounces Belt & Road Research at Shanghai Conference
  12. ECPAFood Waste in the Field Can Double Without Crop Protection. #WithOrWithout #Pesticides