Monday, March 14, 2005
Slovakia is on track to meet its target of adopting the euro currency in 2009, claims Joaquín Almunia, the European Union’s Monetary Affairs Commissioner.
The main monetary figures and the fiscal situation “are going in a good direction,” Almunia said. “If things continue as they are today, I’m sure the Slovak authorities will meet the target of being a member of the eurozone in 2009.”File:1euro 2007.jpg
Slovakia joined the European Union last year along with other Central European, Baltic, and Mediterranean states. The growth rate of its GDP has been one of the highest in the European Union, recording 5.5% growth in 2004. Almunia said that authorities should use this growth to curb the country’s relatively high budget deficit, a necessary prerequisite for joining the euro zone.
Before a country adopts the euro currency, it must dwell in the European Exchange Rate Mechanism II for two years, where its exchange rate relative to the euro, as well as its budget deficit and inflation, are closely monitored. For Slovakia to adopt the euro in 2009, it must join ERM II in 2007. Three new members, Slovenia, Estonia, and Lithuania, have already joined ERM II and are on track to adopt the euro in 2006–2007.