Wednesday

5th Oct 2022

Top eurozone officials meet amid alarm on Italy

  • Barroso (l) and Van Rompuy - market events are outpacing slow-moving political discussions (Photo: consilium.europa.eu)

Top eurozone officials are meeting on Monday (11 July) morning to discuss the debt crisis in the 17-nation single currency region amid concerns that it could spread to Italy.

European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet, EU monetary affairs commissioner Olli Rehn, eurozone chief Jean-Claude Juncker and Jose Manuel Barroso, the head of the European Commission, are attending the specially-convened event in Brussels.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

The meeting, called by European council President Herman Van Rompuy, is expected to focus on the second bailout for Greece and its implications for broader eurozone stability.

Discussions on the fresh Greek package stalled earlier this month over disagreement on the nature of private creditor involvement.

At the time, it was said talks would probably restart in September, after the summer recess. But events once again overtook the political process - Van Rompuy called the event on Saturday, the day after Italian stock markets suffered a dramatic fall of 3.5 percent.

Markets became jittery after Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi publicly criticised his widely-respected finance minister Giulio Tremonti.

There is also concern about the health of Italian banks, with the results of EU stress tests due out on Friday. At the end of last week, the premium which Italy pays to borrow money compared with Germany's soared to its highest point since the eurozone came into being.

Monday morning's extraordinary meeting comes ahead of an earlier-scheduled meeting of eurozone finance ministers in the evening.

The Financial Times reports that eurozone leaders are for the first time to accept that Athens will default on some of its bonds as a part of the second bailout.

With talks on the new package still at an early stage, the paper says the new measures could see a further lowering of interest rates on the bailout loans in a concession to Athens.

Italy: Euro crisis meeting could strain coalition

Italian leader Silvio Berlusconi's coalition government is to face a major test at 6pm local time on Monday, when ministers meet to push through austerity measures under pressure from fellow EU leaders.

Italian 'national consensus' urgent, says Brussels

The European Commission has called on Italy to build a "national consensus" between political parties and with the unions to assure the implementation of austerity measures and structural adjustment in the wake of a surprise downgrade in the country’s credit rating by Standard & Poor’s.

MEPs condemn EU Commission 'leniency' on Hungary

MEPs criticised the EU Commission for what they see as the executive not being tough enough on the government of Viktor Orbán, as Hungary's parliament passed new legislation as part of a deal with the EU executive.

News in Brief

  1. Russia's stand-in EU ambassador reprimanded on Ukraine
  2. France warns over incoming eighth Covid wave
  3. EU adds Anguilla, Bahamas and Turks and Caicos to tax-haven blacklist
  4. Czechs warn joint-nationality citizens in Russia on mobilisation
  5. Greece to unveil proposal for capping EU gas prices
  6. Four dead, 29 missing, after dinghy found off Canary Islands
  7. Orbán: German €200bn shield is start of 'cannibalism in EU'
  8. Lithuania expels top Russian diplomat

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. The European Association for Storage of EnergyRegister for the Energy Storage Global Conference, held in Brussels on 11-13 Oct.
  2. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBA lot more needs to be done to better protect construction workers from asbestos
  3. European Committee of the RegionsThe 20th edition of EURegionsWeek is ready to take off. Save your spot in Brussels.
  4. UNESDA - Soft Drinks EuropeCall for EU action – SMEs in the beverage industry call for fairer access to recycled material
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic prime ministers: “We will deepen co-operation on defence”
  6. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries

Latest News

  1. EU debates new pandemic-type loans to deal with crisis
  2. MEPs condemn EU Commission 'leniency' on Hungary
  3. Czech EU presidency wants asylum pledges to be secret
  4. European navies must stay on Suez trade routes, EU diplomats warn
  5. Macron's 'European Political Community' — how could it work?
  6. EU adopts common charger law, forces iPhone redesign
  7. Last-minute legal changes to Bosnian election law stir controversy
  8. EU wants probe into alleged war crimes by Azerbaijan

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us