Streit mit Italien: “How Does the E.U. Think This Is Going to End?”

Vordergründig scheint Italien im Haushaltsstreit mit der EU einzulenken. Dabei zeigt der erneut, dass wir in die falsche Richtung blicken. Frankreich dürfte das richtige Problem für uns werden. Die Italiener haben es wenigstens probiert.

Dieser Kommentar aus der New York Times unterstreicht, wie dämlich die EU sich wieder anstellt:

  • Brussels — supported by the rest of the governments of Europe — seems to believe that Rome will soon back down, delivering another victory for European Union discipline. But that’s far from certain. Moreover, even if the Italian government does fall into line, the political consequences may prove disastrous for Europe. However the drama ends, Europe is playing a dangerous game.” – bto: Dabei geht es, wie wir in Frankreich beobachten können, um viel mehr.
  • “Italy’s real financial problem, however, is not the annual budget shortfall but the country’s mountain of outstanding debt, running to a total of 2.6 trillion euros, most of which was piled up decades ago by political parties that no longer exist. (…) The debt is widely held by banks inside and outside Italy. A scenario in which Italy had difficulty meeting its financing needs would deal a shattering blow to Europe’s fragile financial system.” – bto: Wie es so ist, die Gläubiger verlieren nun mal. Wenn ein Schuldner nicht bezahlt, dann platzt die Illusion.
  • “Over the past 10 years, Italy’s gross domestic product per capita has fallen. This decline is unique among large advanced economies. (It is even worse than Japan’s infamous lost decades.) And the suffering is extremely unevenly distributed: More than 32 percent of Italy’s young people are unemployed. The gloom, disappointment and frustration are undeniable. For the commission to declare that this is a time for austerity flies in the face of a reality that for many Italians is closer to a personal and national emergency.” – bto: So gesehen sind die Italiener ausgesprochen ruhig.
  • “Even on the European Commission’s pessimistic assumptions, the deficits proposed by Rome wouldn’t send the debt burden out of control. What would tip Italy into real crisis would be a sudden upward adjustment in yields not to 3 percent but to 5 percent or more. If that were to happen, caused by a shock to the market’s confidence in Italy, there would be an explosive surge in debt service costs. (…)  This risk is what makes the confrontation between Rome and the commission so worrying. The game of chicken could easily spook the markets.” – bto: Tut es aber nicht, weil die Märkte (zu Recht wie ich finde) davon ausgehen, dass die EZB letztlich doch eingreift.
  • “Brussels has a limited range of sanctions at its disposal. Unlike Greece, which was a net recipient of European Union largess, Italy is a net contributor to the European Union’s budget. It won’t be easy to make penalties and fines stick. It will therefore have to be the markets that deliver the discipline. But that is a terrifying prospect: Not only is Italy’s debt huge, but Italy’s banks are not minnows, either. Italy is both too big to fail and too big to bail.” – bto: Klar, wenn die Panik da wäre, dann könnte sie nur die EZB aufhalten.
  • “While Five Star’s popularity has slid, support for the League has doubled to 34 percent. The League is a party of northern Italian small business. It is far from keen on Five Star’s plans to increase welfare for the south. A League-dominated reshuffle that dropped Five Star’s expensive minimum-income guarantee would go a long way to meeting the financial demands of the European Commission. (…) That would no doubt reassure investors, but it would be a disastrous outcome for the European Union, handing a political victory to Matteo Salvini, Italy’s deputy prime minister, who makes no secret of his desire to remake Europe as an arena of neo-nationalist, nativist politics.” – bto: Und der Front National holt dann bei den nächsten Europawahlen 35 Prozent. Das dürfte eng werden für Herrn Weber …
  • “A face-saving compromise may yet be arranged over the expensive pension proposals. (…)  But this is, to say the least, a high-risk and negative strategy. Above all it fails to address the deep sense of crisis in Italy. If the European Union is determined to hold the line on debt and deficits, it should offer something positive in exchange, such as a common European investment and growth strategy or a more cooperative approach to the refugee question, which has driven the upsurge in the League. If all Brussels has to offer is discipline, it is inviting the remaking of Italian politics along lines that are more nationalist and more hostile to Europe.” – bto: wie im Rest der EU. Und damit nicht nachhaltig.

→ “How Does the E.U. Think This Is Going to End?”, 5. Dezember 2018