A plot, or not? – Eurocrat talks down pound

So a top Eurocrat, president of the EU commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, reveals in an interview with a French radio station that “the people that matter” in the UK – which is to say, top politicians and capitalists – are set on entering the Eurozone.

Yes, that’s right – more European integration, this time the single currency. Business minister Lord (of Darkness) Mandelson has said he is very keen, which could indicate the line of travel.

Today, sterling fell sharply against the dollar:

The pound was down 5.2 cents to $1.486, its largest one day fall in percentage terms since sterling crashed out of the Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) in 1992.

In the past, the Brown administration has slammed those who would “talk down the pound”… Isn’t this what Barroso has been doing?

The PM’s spokesman, Michael Ellam has refuted the claims:

“We have no plans to change our position on the euro,” the spokesman told reporters. “There is no change in our position, there is no intention to change our position.”

Barroso told France’s RTL radio that British leaders had told him in conversation they would be better off now — given the financial market turmoil — if they had adopted the much more widely used euro as their currency.

“I don’t mean to say that it will be tomorrow and I know that the majority in Britain remain opposed to this idea, but it is evolving and the people who count in the United Kingdom are in the process of thinking about it,” Barroso said.

But Brown’s spokesman said: “I think the person who counts the most is the prime minister and his position is quite clear that we have no plans to join the euro.”

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2 Responses to “A plot, or not? – Eurocrat talks down pound”

  1. john Says:

    I have been convinced for some time that one of the consequences of this this recession would be that we would be forced into the euro. The scenario, a sterling crises and the alternatives, going to the IMF or joining the euro.
    It’s interesting that in recent weeks, Will Hutton puts the case in the Guardian, William Keegan in a article in the Observer says we would only ever join the euro from a position of weekness and Steve Richards in the Independent wrote the way we are going we will end up in the euro.

  2. charliemarks Says:

    What’s curious is that a weak pound may be good for manufacturing here (when and if there is a global recovery) at a time when we very much need an increase in production for export and domestic markets. Joining the Euro would limit further distance political power from the people and prevent the government from intervening in the economy by setting interest rates, etc. So not only would it be joining from a position of weakness, but it would weaken efforts to lessen the impact of the recession.


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