Douste defends euro

7th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

STRASBOURG, June 7 (AFP) - New French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy called on EU members on Tuesday not to question European monetary union, saying that all the states were "a lot weaker before the euro".

STRASBOURG, June 7 (AFP) - New French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy called on EU members on Tuesday not to question European monetary union, saying that all the states were "a lot weaker before the euro".  

The French minister said: "The euro is a plus for European economies."  

He was speaking to journalists at the European Parliament in Strasbourg after meeting its president, Josep Borrell and the president of the EU's executive commission, Jose Manuel Barroso.  

"All those who remember economic and social policy before the euro know that as far as exchange rates are concerned, in terms of inflation, countries before the euro were much weaker in international competition," he said.  

Douste-Blazy's remarks came as the euro single currency improved after falling steeply following the two "no" votes against the EU constitution last week in France and the Netherlands.  

It also came after two Italian government ministers had suggested that the lira be refloated alongside the euro single currency.  

"Just because a constitution was rejected in some countries, it doesn't mean that European construction has to be rethought," Douste-Blazy said.  

Borrell warned the bloc's 25 members to avoid doing further economic damage.  

"Under the circumstances, great ideas abound. We must ask everyone to avoid frivolity and such brilliant ideas," he said. "Imagine the monetary turmoil that would be shaking the European Union today if it weren't for the euro."

© AFP

Subject: French News

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