On the future of EMU: Targeted reforms instead of more fiscal integration

20  September 2016    5:00 pm

Anna Iara, European Commission Secretariat-General


wiiw, Rahlgasse 3, 1060 Vienna, lecture hall (ground floor)


Our paper contributes to the debate on deepening EMU by taking stock of the past years’ reform achievements and identifying areas where further reform is needed, notably concerning monetary policy, financial regulation, and national fiscal and structural reform. Provided these reforms are taken, we consider the current framework
sufficient to sustain without a strict necessity of further fiscal integration (that may still
be a policy choice). Our judgement rests on an understanding of the challenges to the
euro area to arise from balance of payments crises of its members and the observation
that conditions in the euro area today are not representative of the future. Still, broad-
based growth is hard to materialise in an environment of debt overhang in some economies: we recognise the need to support the recovery in the euro area, but call for
temporary instead of permanent instruments to achieve this aim.
Anna Iara has been a staff member of the European Commission since 2009, having
been in charge of economic policy analysis and coordination of fiscal policy, macroeconomic adjustment programmes, taxation, and economic governance in the Directorates-General for Economics and Finance and Taxation and Customs Union respectively, and the Secretariat-General at present. Before joining the Commission, she was a research economist at the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies and the Center for European Integration Studies (Bonn). Anna holds a doctoral degree in economics from the University of Bonn and masters' degrees in economics (Central European University) and geography (Bonn). Her publications cover issues of public  finance, European integration, labour markets and migration, regional economics, and economics of transition.