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欧元区难逃解体厄运?

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小编摘要:欧洲一些国家已经债台高筑、麻烦不断了,情况会不会继续恶化?有些人提出了令人难以置信的想法:由17国组成的欧元区可能将解体。

The European Union just celebrated its twelfth birthday, and it's clearly hit its awkward phase. Though the value of the euro has strengthened some against the US dollar in recent weeks, it has undergone a very bumpy ride on signs that Europe's sovereign-debt crisis will damage the region's banks and force the entire area into a prolonged period of slow economic growth. In June, the euro approached a four-year low against the US dollar, touching $1.211 on June 1 – the lowest since April 2006.

The question now is just how many more birthdays does the EU have without a dismantling of the euro zone? A break-up of the 17-member zone is possible, but not probable, according to many economists. If it were to happen, the catalyst will be political, not economic, said John Taylor, founder of FX Concepts at a forum in New York yesterday that brought together academics, analysts and Germany's Finance Minister Joerg Asmussen, who called the euro a "cornerstone" of European integration and reiterated the country's support for the common currency.

Debt-ridden Greece and Ireland have received multi-billion dollar bailout packages in hopes to keep the crisis from spreading. Spain and Portugal have faltered, leading some to question just how many more bailouts the euro zone will be able to handle.

Taylor says while a euro zone break-up probably won't happen anytime soon, one of the developments to watch for is how Europeans respond to unprecedented measures to tighten spending. Recently, Greece's parliament approved its 2011 budget that included aims to cut the fiscal deficit to about half of last year's level. The cuts were indeed deepest in decades, prompting protests by unions. But Prime Minister George Papandreou has maintained his popularity so far.

Surely Greece and Ireland spent too much when economic times were good. But the possible side-effects of strict austerity measures are very slow growth and even negative economic growth. And if it gets to the point where it cuts into the relatively comfortably lifestyle citizens have enjoyed in recent years, there could be a political price to pay, Taylor told the audience at the Bloomberg European Debt Crisis conference. Wage cuts, as we've seen in Greece, have not gone well with unions. Virtually no country wants to see a break-up, but he said it's possible that frustrations could escalate to the point where constituents feeling the weight of a slow-growing economy could start pressuring elected officials to part ways with the euro zone.

It remains to be seen how the debt crisis pans out, but Taylor's remarks highlight the fact that Europeans could simply choose not to belong to the euro zone. Greece and Ireland might be worse off adopting a new currency, but if budget cuts lead to growth so anemic that it makes its citizens miserable, leaving the euro zone might just become a more real -- albeit not necessary better -- option.



欧盟(European Union)刚刚庆祝过12周年诞辰,不过显然它正身陷难关。近几周来,尽管欧元对美元的比值略有走强,但鉴于欧洲的主权债务危机将损及各大银行,并迫使整个地区陷入持续的经济缓慢增长期,欧元一路走来可谓跌跌撞撞。去年6月,欧元对美元的比值跌到四年来的新低,6月1日的牌价为1欧元兑换1.211美元——为2006年4月以来的最低点。


现在的问题是,在欧元区解体之前,欧盟还有几个诞辰可过?在许多经济学家看来,17个成员国分崩离析的可能性是存在的,但还谈不上大有可能。如果这种前景真会发生,那么,诱因将来自政治领域而非经济领域。这是FX Concepts创始人约翰•泰勒日前在纽约一个论坛上发表的高见。在该论坛上,学者、分析师及德国财政部长阿斯姆森齐聚一堂。阿斯姆森将欧元称为欧洲一体化的“基石”,并重申了德国支持欧元的立场。

负债累累的希腊和爱尔兰已接受了数十亿美元的援助,以期阻止危机继续扩散。西班牙和葡萄牙的状况已经岌岌可危,以至于有人发出了质疑:欧元区还能实施多少类似的援助计划呢?

泰勒表示,虽然欧元区解体可能不会近在眼前,但值得关注的一个动向是,面对前所未有的紧缩开支政策,欧洲人会作何反应。最近,希腊议会批准了其2011年预算方案,其中包括旨在将财政赤字削减到去年同期水平一半左右的目标。该削减举措是数十年来力度最大的,以至于激起了工会的抗议。不过迄今为止,希腊总理帕潘德里欧的支持率未见下降。

毫无疑问,经济形势一片大好时,希腊和爱尔兰花钱太大手大脚了。不过,严格的紧缩措施可能带来的副作用是,经济增长将变得非常缓慢,甚至出现负增长。近些年来,这些国家的民众一直享受着相对舒适的生活方式,一旦这种举措对这种生活方式构成威胁时,就可能将付出政治代价。这是泰勒在彭博资讯欧洲债务危机会议( Bloomberg European Debt Crisis Conference)上对听众发表的观点。正像我们已在希腊看到的情况,削减薪酬已经致使与工会关系紧张。实际上,欧盟成员国没有哪个真的想看到欧盟走到解体的境地,但是,泰勒表示,各国弥漫的挫败感可能会不断加剧,到了一定程度,因为经济增长缓慢而不堪重负的选民,可能向民选官员施压,要求脱离欧元区。

债务危机最终将会如何收场还有待观察,不过泰勒的观点表明了一个事实,即欧洲人大可以选择径直脱离欧元区。希腊和爱尔兰如果采用新货币,处境可能会更糟。但是,如果削减预算导致经济增长苍白无力,以至于两国民众日子更为难熬的话,那么脱离欧元区可能会变成更现实的——虽然不一定是更好的——一个选择。
标签:欧元区 解体
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2011-02-05 17:25 编辑:kuaileyingyu
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