The new President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, is resolutely optimistic. After three exceptional heights imposed by the Greek crisis and its implications for the whole of the euro area, the "regular" of the heads of State and Government meeting, held today in Brussels, will endeavour to highlight the "many convergences" which, according to him, appeared on two key contained records on the menu of the twenty-seven: the adoption of the European plan for employment and growth (baptized so far "EU 2020") and the strengthening of economic breast governance the euro area, but also of the Union.
The new strategy of the Union for employment and growth (see below) has several objectives: ensure the sustainability of public finances while strengthening competitiveness, productivity, growth potential and social cohesion, and economic convergence. To achieve, it identifies five priorities encrypted, that Member States must then commit to implement by adopting guidelines meant to converge this through their economic policy and employment.
Harden the stability pact
To prevent that the Greek scenario and the storm it was triggered on markets, twenty-seven should also commit to strengthen economic governance in curing the stability and Growth Pact. The France and the Germany, long divided on the modalities of such a project, seem to have found common ground Monday, at the Sarkozy-Merkel meeting in Berlin. As wished by Angela Merkel, the bulk of coordination will be at the level of the twenty-seven, but an informal group reduced to sixteen countries of the euro area may meet when needed. The working group chaired by Herman Van Rompuy was already progress on several proposals which outline could be the subject of a first package adopted today by European leaders. It includes strengthening sanctions against countries that lax earlier to the national to the European authorities budget projects, attach importance to the debt substantially more large than currently, and to confer independence and powers of control to the EU statistical authorities. At this stage, the twenty-seven should not pronounce on the suspension of the voting rights of lax countries claimed by the Germany before determining whether or not it involves a revision of the treaties. "There is no taboo, but this procedure would be very heavy," explained a few days ago Herman Van Rompuy. And either London or Paris are excited to embark on a new reform of European treaties.
Ten days of the G20 in Toronto, the leaders of the Union should also take stock of the progress of reforms to improve the regulation of financial markets. According to draft conclusions, they should agree "that it is appropriate to introduce a levy on financial institutions so that they contribute to the cost of the crisis". The Council and the Commission should be invited to advance to here at the European Summit in October. In the meantime, Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel should send a joint letter to Canadian Prime Minister, who will chair the G20, to claim the implementation study of a banking tax and a tax based on financial transactions. Finally, the Commission should require the European Commission that it meets the very tight timetable that it has itself set to present, "before the end of the summer", legislative proposals on short sales and derivatives.
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