BUSINESS EU leaders tout euro's success on eve of 20th anniversary

BUSINESS

EU leaders tout euro's success on eve of 20th anniversary

Xinhua

03:38, January 01, 2019

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A coin and banknotes of the euro are seen in Brussels, Belgium, Dec. 28, 2018. On the eve of the euro's 20th anniversary, European Union leaders lavished praise on the common currency on Monday, calling it "one of the biggest European success stories." On Jan. 1, 1999, 11 EU countries launched the euro and introduced a shared monetary policy under the European Central Bank. It is now the currency of 340 million Europeans in 19 EU member states. (Photo: Xinhua)

BRUSSELS, Dec. 31 (Xinhua) -- On the eve of the euro's 20th anniversary, European Union leaders lavished praise on the common currency on Monday, calling it "one of the biggest European success stories."

On Jan. 1, 1999, 11 EU countries launched the euro and introduced a shared monetary policy under the European Central Bank. It is now the currency of 340 million Europeans in 19 EU member states.

Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, said "the euro has become a symbol of unity, sovereignty and stability."

Antonio Tajani, president of the European Parliament, said "the euro is more popular today than ever: three out of four citizens believe it is good for our economy."

Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, said the euro "has since matured into a powerful expression of the European Union as a political and economic force in the world. Despite crises, the euro has shown itself resilient."

Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank, said "after 20 years, there is now a generation who knows no other domestic currency."

Mario Centeno, president of the Eurogroup, said the single currency has been "one of the biggest European success stories."

The EU leaders also used the occasion to underline the need for further reforms within the bloc to strengthen the common currency.

"It has delivered prosperity and protection to our citizens and we must ensure that it continues to do so. This is why we are working hard to complete our Economic and Monetary Union and boost the euro's international role further," Juncker said.

Tajani said "in order for Europeans to benefit fully from the jobs, growth and solidarity that the single currency should bring, we must complete our Economic and Monetary Union through genuine financial, fiscal and political union."

"There can be no doubts of our political will to strengthen the Economic and Monetary Union. We need to be prepared for what the future may hold -- we owe that to our citizens," Centeno said.

All the comments were made public in a press release of the European Commission.


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