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Slovakia Takes Up Euro Currency

  • January 4th, 2009
  • Posted by EUEditor

euro-symbol-reduced10.jpgSlovakia became the 16th country to take up the Euro currency, on 1.1.09.

The European Commission said most people in the country had replaced their former currency, the Tolar, for Euros, before the exchange date arrived, and were able to obtain Euros immediately through automatic teller machines.

The Commission President, Jose Manuel Barroso, said Slovakia’s joining the 15 other countries in the Euro area would help Slovakia in the present financial crisis, and was a strong symbol of European integration.

“Slovakia has enhanced its long-term potential to create growth and jobs and keep inflation under control”, he said.

All 27 member countries of the European Union are committed by treaty to eventually enter the “Euro area”, but must qualify by meeting set standards in economic management and performance: on inflation; containment of budget deficits; exchange rate stability; long-term interest rates; and a measure of the “compatibility” of each country’s legislation, e.g. statutes of its reserve bank.

Some able to qualify – Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom- have postponed the transition.

Benefits of the Euro are attached to the removal of exchange and trading costs, and the possibility of enacting direct transactions eventually anywhere within the European Union. (See EUAustralia, “Spending Euros In Slovenia”, 21.1.07).

Since the down-turn on world financial and money markets late last year the Euro has appreciated steeply against other currencies including the US dollar and the British Pound.

Reference:

European Commission, Brussels, “Slovakia adopted the euro today” (Media Release), IP/09/1, 1.1.09.

EC, Directorate general ECFIN, background on the Euro. http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/euro/our_currency_en.htm, (4.1.09).

EC, documentary on the Euro. http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/emu10/documentary.htm, (4.1.09).

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