Berès: ‘I’m not convinced measures to tackle crisis have always been right ones’

beres-2614295-jpg_2251992Pervenche Berès

The question of how to resolve Europe’s economic woes continues to divide the European Union. The economic committee approved on 16 June a report evaluating the EU’s economic governance. French S&D MEP Pervenche Berès (pictured), who wrote the report, has said that there was a clear division between those who believe current rules are not working and those who say they not been correctly implemented.

MEPs will vote on the recommendations during the plenary session on 24 June in time for the European Council on 25-26 June where the future of the eurozone’s economic governance will be discussed.

Have the reforms and actions taken in the EU after the financial and economic crisis borne fruit? What is missing?

The crisis forced us to take drastic measures, but I’m not convinced they have always been the right ones. They enabled us to resolve some of the issues in the short term, but they have not led to the completion of the  economic and monetary union.

Have austerity policies decided in the economic governance framework contributed to traditional parties losing seats to new ones?

Some say these rules should be scrapped as they have not worked because they have only led to more austerity. And others say that Europe isn’t doing well because these rules have not been implemented. There is a lack of confidence between those two camps. It’s about finding the means to convince people that things have to be changed, that some rules have led to austerity, deflation and unemployment and therefore have to be changed. The fact that Jean-Claude Juncker was obliged to come up with an investment plan at the start of his mandate is for me a sign that something is wrong with the current rules.

Could international creditors push Greece to default and leave the eurozone by insisting on reform?

I don’t have a crystal ball, so I don’t know what the results will be of these negotiations. However, I know a lot of time has been wasted on posturing. I sincerely hope that Greece will stay in the eurozone, but for that to happen both sides have to be willing to make concessions.

How could parliaments be more involved in the European semester cycle?

I definitely believe that the European Parliament and the national parlements should become more involved in economic governance. When the next cycle starts, the European Parliament will be fully committed to coming up with an analysis of the situation in the eurozone, both in terms of diagnosing the problems and suggesting guidelines.

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Category: A Frontpage, Economy, EU, EU, EU economic forecast, EU financial framework, EU Investment Plan, European Parliament

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