The EMU Versus the EPU: A historical perspective on trade, payments and the European financial crisis
Juan Carlos Martinez Oliva
Published: June 2013
This article draws upon the analogy between the current European institutional setting, in the face of the current European crisis, and the rules and institutions that were established in the post-war years to achieve trade liberalisation and a multilateral payments system in Europe. Differently than in the past, a feature of today’s crisis is that trade and payment imbalances have been overlooked, under the assumption that in a closely-integrated single-currency area, trade and payments imbalances do not matter. The implications are discussed in the light of the need to overcome the present crisis and to proceed towards integration goals.