On April 30, 2013, the AICGS Business & Economics Program hosted a roundtable discussion with Dr. Hans-Werner Sinn, President of the Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, moderated by Dr. Jackson Janes, President of AICGS. The discussion focused on the euro crisis, politics within euro zone member states, the result of bailouts, the euro zone’s uncertain future, and the potential outcomes of euro zone policies. The participants discussed a variety of ideas, ultimately not settling on one conclusion. First, the monetary union could disband, which would result in a failure of the monetary union. Second, the weaker euro zone members could exit, creating a slimmer, fitter union comprised only of the more stable nations. Third, the euro zone could become more of a “United States of Europe” that would better integrate political forces and provide common insurance and financial oversight.
No matter which decision is made, European leadership must take some action quickly. The longer the euro zone waits, the greater the losses and consequences will be. The German population, while concerned about the euro crisis and bailout, generally has faith in the euro. As long as the crisis simmers, Germany’s economy will continue its slow growth. The current strife between states in Western Europe, however, is at its most intense in recent history.
Made possible by the support of AICGS Business & Economics Program