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The Euro and the Nation-State That Never Disappeared: Would Europe Benefit from the Return of National Currencies?

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Abstract

This chapter discusses the current problems and future prospects of the euro area. The author argues that the problem for the euro area is not the return of the nation-state, but that the nation-states never disappeared. A common currency requires common economic policies, which is largely lacking in the euro area. As a result, large economic and social imbalances have emerged. The chapter examines proposals from the European Commission to increase the level of co-operation to reduce the imbalances. He finds the proposals backward-looking and insufficient. Towards the end of the chapter, the author explores possibility of some countries leaving the euro area. He finds that a friendly divorce is costly in the short term, but likely needed to restore economic balance in the long run. According to the author, a smaller euro area may mean more European co-operation down the line.

Keywords

EMU Fiscal union Optimal currency areas Euro area 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lund UniversityLundSweden

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