Travellers are getting increasingly frustrated with the Eurostat statistics that keep showing a slow recovery in the eurozone’s economy.
A recent Eurostat survey showed that the eurozone economy is still losing ground despite the introduction of a new €300m funding plan for the eurozone.
The government of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the European Commission are currently pushing for an additional €1.5bn to be provided by the European Central Bank to help revive the eurozone economy.
But despite the efforts to create more funds to help Europe’s struggling economies, economists say the euro zone economy is not growing in a sustained way.
“The euro zone has become an experiment, not a stable member of the global economy,” says Professor Christoph Schoenberg of the Institute of International Relations, a Berlin think-tank.
“There’s still a long way to go, especially for growth, but it’s possible to get a sense of how well it’s doing,” he says.
“The euro is still struggling.”
Eurozone GDP has shrunk for a quarter of a century.
And if it’s to recover, it needs a lot more help.
“If the ECB can provide that, and if there are a lot of countries willing to take on that debt, then the eurozone can recover,” he adds.
Schoenberg says the ECB is doing a good job of keeping inflation down, but says it needs more.
He points to the fact that inflation is already well below the ECB’s target of 1 per cent.
“In the long term, it’s hard to imagine how it’s going to be sustainable,” he said.
“We are witnessing a situation where the euro crisis is really getting out of control.”
Schoenburg says that while the ECB will eventually need to borrow more to help the euro, the best thing for the future of the euro is to avoid a financial crisis.
“The ECB’s primary job is to create the conditions for the euro to recover,” Schoenberger says.
“In our view, there’s nothing more to be done than to leave the euro and to let the euro die.”
“The EU has a big problem, not just with the euro but also with the banking system, with the European banking system and the EU itself.”
Professor Christoph Schönberg of the Institute of International Relations in Berlin.
Photo: Rolf Wahlberg/Reuters A spokesman for the ECB said it is aware of the concerns raised by Prof Schoenburg.
Eurostat said the bank has already taken action to address these concerns and has increased its support for the European Union.
But the ECB has also come under criticism for failing to adequately tackle the euro’s biggest problem.
The bank said last month it had taken steps to improve its oversight of the banks, including strengthening its supervision of European investment banks, but its actions have not led to systemic reforms in the banking sector.
Schreibt says it would be a mistake for the bank to abandon its efforts to bring about structural reform.
“What we need is a political and financial change,” he explains.
“If we don’t see that change, then it’s very hard to see how it can be done.”
“But if we don [do] the right thing, the euro will survive.”
But it’s a very difficult thing to achieve, because the euro itself is in a difficult position.
“You cannot just start to look at the European economy and think: ‘I don’t want to do this anymore’.”