Nr. 12-2011 Published monthly by:
The Swedish Chamber of Commerce
in Estonia

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For better, for worse - The euro will survive, but on a long term basis there are big challenges ahead, said Annika Winsth, Chief Economist at Nordea Bank, as the eurozone recently was discussed in the Swedish daily newspaper Svenska Dagbladet.

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Annika Winsth
- The euro is a political project, much has been invested in it, and it is not about to be scrapped just like that, continued Annika Winsth.

- Actions need to be taken and these actions have to please both the market and the voters in the countries involved. It might happen that one or a couple of countries leave the eurozone, and one uncertainty is how many countries can do that without putting the euro cooperation in an even greater danger, concluded Annika Winsth.

- There is a design fault with the euro cooperation, said Nordea Bank’s President and Group CEO, Christian Clausen. The countries are allowed to print debt bonds, but not euro bills - that latter issue is a task for the European Central Bank. But, what’s the financial difference between cash euros and short term debt bonds…?


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Christian Clausen
- Only ECB should have been given the mandate to print debt bonds. Then things wouldn’t have gone so far as they have. Anyhow, I think that the idea with the euro is right, and I still think Sweden should join the eurozone, concluded Christian Clausen.









The German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the President of France Nicolas Sarkozy, said no to Eurobonds as they met in mid-August.

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Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel
Instead they proposed a package of actions intended to counter the euro crisis including a coordinated financial policy, a law on budget balance and constitutional laws on debt ceilings for the eurozone countries. The latter an action that Angela Merkel said “will prevent that promises made are forgotten as soon as a new government takes power”.

Furthermore, Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy also proposed a tax on financial transactions.

- I don’t believe in the idea of this tax if it isn’t introduced globally, commented Sweden’s Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt. Sweden had a tax like this from 1983 to 1991 and our experiences are that the tax incomes generated are minor, and that the financial transactions simply move to a country where they are not taxed.

- If this tax will be introduced in the eurozone, it is easy to realize that the transactions simply will move to Stockholm or London, concluded Fredrik Reinfeldt.

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