Munich Personal RePEc Archive

EMU crisis creates regional groupings: are Balkan countries challenged by that?

Nenovski, Tome (2012): EMU crisis creates regional groupings: are Balkan countries challenged by that? Published in: Regionalni Razvoj i Demografski Tokovi Zemalja Jugoistocne Evrope No. 17 (June 2012): pp. 23-38.

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Abstract

Together with the IMF and the World Bank, the EMU is the biggest monetary project in the history of mankind. Its goals are reduction of trade costs between its member-states, increase in the convergence in their relations and their economic growth. The main pillars of the monetary institutions were set up for its normal operation. However, the member-countries kept their fiscal sovereignty. The EMU was not a part of a larger political integration of the member-countries. It enabled them to make political decisions on a national level which were not in line with the so-called Maastricht criteria. The outcome of the lack of a political union is: growing budget deficits and continuing growth of the public debt of most of the member-states of the EMU. A debt crisis was created which shakes the basis not only of the EMU but also of the EU. For the first time in its six and a half decade existence, the EU faces an existential crisis. The exit of this condition lies in redesigning of the basic structures on which it stands. This process might be fatal, as well as painful for the EU. In such situation, the Balkan aspiring member-states will have to wait longer to enter the union. In the meantime, to protect their national economic and political tissue, as well as to prepare for the accession in the EU, a regional cooperation and union is a necessity. A Balkan Economic Union in which Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro, Turkey and Macedonia will be a part will help in achieving the goal of entering the EU less painfully, and the Balkan, at last to stop being the “gunpowder barrel”. With application of a quality, historic, comparative and descriptive method, this paper presents the possibilities and opportunities of this model of designing a political and economic picture of the Balkan. The aim of this paper is to show that with such a union, the Balkan countries have a serious chance to overcome, still, the prevalent antagonisms and thus clear the way to their final destination – the EU.

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