Skip to comments.Europe set to hit debt-ridden nations in the pocket
Posted on 05/21/2010 7:51:47 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
BRUSSELS (AFP) Crisis-hit European finance ministers took their first steps on Friday towards punishing countries that don't honour the rules on keeping national debts and deficits down, including cash penalties.
However, on the same day that the German parliament approved its share of a near trillion-dollar (750-billion-euro) eurozone rescue package, running to about 150 billion euros, ministers showed no appetite for a bid by Berlin to force heavily-indebted partners into bankruptcy.
The first meeting of a new 'task force' convened by EU president Herman Van Rompuy also left the difficult question of possible treaty changes required to craft a tough new regime of 'economic governance' across the 27-nation European Union on the back burner.
After the biggest drop in more than a year on Wall Street triggered fresh turmoil in Asian markets, work will now begin on a first report not scheduled to be delivered to EU leaders until June 17.
The task force's final report is not due until October.
Van Rompuy said there was "a very clear broad consensus on the principle of having financial sanctions and non-financial sanctions."
He was referring to EU rules restricting deficit and debt levels, rules that lie in tatters in the wake of huge debts accumulated in Greece, Spain, Portugal and elsewhere.
But European Commissioner for economic affairs, Olli Rehn, said the devil would lie in the detail, warning of "some difficult discussions" still lying ahead.
Van Rompuy said the task force -- which includes most EU finance ministers -- would also focus on finding ways to reduce divergences in competitiveness between individual European economies, while working to come up with "effective" crisis resolution management for the future.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
this is made-up garbage
countries will find ways around the rules
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