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EU democracy and solidarity sacrificed on the altar of financial markets


01 Feb 2012


Euro & Finance

The adoption of the Fiscal Pact with its further extremes in cuts and austerity is an approach criticised even by the IMF, GUE/NGL President Lothar Bisky told the European Parliament this afternoon in the debate on the fiscal compact deal agreed Monday in Brussels.

"Only radical measures to prevent speculative activities in the markets can stem the crisis decisively. Instead, states are to be punished by the Commission and the European Courts for non-compliance with new budgetary rules. This absurd and undemocratic procedure means states are losing their most important legal tool - fiscal sovereignty" he said.

"It is totally unacceptable that solidarity and assistance to states in need of assistance will be conditional on signing up to such rigid constraints - thus, the most important principle of the EU has been sacrificed on the altar of financial markets."

"The Left advocates a reversal of this disastrous policy. We need a pact for sustainable growth and employment, public programmes for investment, environment and education.

Above all, the democratic voice of the European Parliament and the citizens must be heard with this week's deal put to referendums and public consultation."

Danish MEP Søren Søndergaard highlighted the ridiculousness of the provisions agreed this week at Council.

"It's unbelievable. If countries have economic problems - just sanction them. Voilà, problem solved. Why has nobody thought of this before? So simple! So efficient! Why not use this method for all other problems? If a country has high unemployment - fine it. Too many poor people? - fight poverty with fines!".

"However, if a country chooses to implement a massive public investment in the future - for example by taking loans to create green jobs in solar, wind and wave energy - then they'll face EU sanctions. This very blinkered way to implement economic policy helps us understand why the Council meeting on Monday was greeted by Belgian workers on strike. Such protest will continue and intensify if the policy adopted at the summit is allowed to continue."

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:

David Lundy +32 485 50 58 12

Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

European United Left / Nordic Green Left

European Parliamentary Group 


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