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Convergence report of the European Commission: green light for Slovakia

The European Commission concluded on 7 May 2008 that Slovakia meets the criteria for adopting the euro and made a proposal to the Council to this effect.

07/05/2008

The regular Convergence Report on euro readiness, adopted by the Commission, shows that the other nine countries with a so-called 'derogation' have made progress on the road to the single currency, but do not yet meet all the conditions for euro adoption. The Council of EU finance ministers (ECOFIN) will take the final decision on the adoption of the euro in Slovakia in July, after Parliament has given its opinion and EU heads of state and government have discussed the subject at their summit meeting in June.

The Convergence Reports examine whether Member States satisfy the conditions for adopting the single currency, namely:

  • the economic criteria (price stability, sound public finances, exchange rate stability and convergence in long-term interest rates);
  • compatibility of national legislation with Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) rules (independence of the national Central Bank, prohibition of monetary financing, compatibility with the statutes of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) and of the ECB).


Article 122(2) of the European Union Treaty requires the Commission (and the ECB) to assess the fulfilment of the conditions for the adoption of the euro by Member States with a so-called derogation at least every two years or at the request of a Member State. The 10 Member States are Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Sweden.

The present report is the latest regular report. The Commission last assessed the convergence progress of all countries concerned in December 2006. In May 2007, the Commission assessed convergence in Malta and Cyprus upon their request. Bulgaria and Romania are assessed for the first time in 2008. On 4 April 2008, Slovakia also introduced a request for an assessment in view of euro adoption on 1 January 2009.

The euro was introduced on 1 January 1999. Euro coins and banknotes were introduced as from 1 January 2002. After the adoption of the euro by Slovenia, in 2007, and by Cyprus and Malta in 2008, the euro area presently has 15 EU members and 320 million people out of the EU's total of 495 million.

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