Today (23 September) Mario Draghi came to the European Parliament’s ECON committee meeting
My intervention focused on the external aspect of the governance of the euro.
Thank you for the active role which you played in the drafting of the “Five Presidents’ Report” which presents an important message showing confidence in the future, at a critical moment.
You have very rightly raised the question of the external representation of the euro zone, which President Juncker mentioned in the plenary.
I am currently responsible for an own initiative report concerning the role of the EU in international financial and economic organisations and would like to ask you two questions which follow the step by step logic of your “road map”:
- What can be done, immediately, in order to improve transparency concerning the role played by the ECB in global bodies such as the Financial Stability Board (created by the G20) and the Basel Committee?
- What could be the basic steps in order to ensure the democratic legitimacy of the external representation of the euro? Currently the Euro Group is not accountable to an assembly of the euro zone?
His first answer deserves to be highlighted: Mario Draghi declared that he is ready “to inform the European Parliament of the positions taken by the ECB within these organisations”. This openness is very important and must be returned to.
Concerning the external representation of the euro in general, and the accountability problem which Juncker’s proposal (which involves entrusting this task to the Euro Group) poses, Mario Draghi shows exceptional modesty: for him, it is the responsibility of the Member States rather than of the ECB! Having been one of the most active members in the debate concerning the governance of the euro, this sudden reserve speaks volumes. He probably does not want to fight on all fronts. It is up to the Parliament to take up the reins and to demonstrate that Member States’ lack of foresight is, in the long-run, harmful for European interests.