Discussion Papers, Center for European Governance and Economic Development Research 132
The paper discusses the seriousness of current account imbalances in the last few decades in Europe, with a particular focus on the European Monetary Union. A closer look at the development of current accounts in European economies suggests the existence of some serious structural problems that might jeopardize economic performance of single countries, but even more importantly, of the entire monetary union. Although current account positions have been subject of numerous research projects till now, scarce interest has been offered regarding specifically the situation in the member states of the euro area and in the euro candidate countries. This lack of interest could be justified among others with the myopic conviction expressed in the literature that current account positions become irrelevant in a monetary union. Instead, there are conceptual reasons to be worried about external imbalances in a currency area, and particularly, in the current as well as potentially enlarged EMU.
current account imbalances, monetary union, central and eastern European countries, southern European countries