Verhofstadt eyes single European economic policy

Former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt (Flemish liberal) wants the European Union to adopt a common European economic policy. Mr Verhofstadt, who leads the liberal fraction in the European Parliament, also proposed to install a unified European bond market to halt speculation against the European currency.

Speaking on VRT radio, Guy Verhofstadt said that the euro is the world's only currency which is not being supported by one government, one financial-economic policy or one bond market. According to Mr Verhofstadt, this partly explains the speculation against countries belonging to the euro zone.

In order to tackle this problem, Mr Verhofstadt wants to create a single European bond market apart from the 16 types of state bonds European countries have now.

By acting as one player, the euro zone would be able to keep the rent better under control. It would also allow the EU to reduce the big rent gaps between state bonds in the different European countries. For the moment, Germany is enjoying a 2.6 percent rent, while Greece has to cope with 12 percent. 

This also requires a common policy within the EU, or at least a common policy by the 16 countries which make up the euro zone, Mr Verhofstadt adds. He says that these countries do not necessarily have to adopt the same policy: moving in the same direction should be sufficient.