Past Event

Brussels Briefing Live: A conversation with Nadia Calviño

The Minister of Finance from Spain discusses challenges ahead of the European Council in December

Date: November 6, 2018, 2:00 pm Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

audio & video recordings

After the ECOFIN meeting, Bruegel and the Financial Times hosted a conversation with the Minister of Finance from Spain to discuss challenges related to pressing issues in the agenda ahead of the European Council in December, including European Monetary Union reforms and digital taxation.

In the aftermath of the ECFIN meeting, Nadia Calviño shared her thoughts on the recent achievements and ambitions of the European project. The minister provided an optimistic yet pragmatic view, highlighting the consolidation and recent acceleration of the Spanish economy and the general deepening of the EU in terms of economic and fiscal policy integration.
The minister noted how great advances have been made for the banking union and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM). Their technical character, unfortunately, renders them hard to communicate to the EU citizen. Nadia Calviño highlighted other topics of high importance which are indeed ‘marketable’, such as the EU deposit insurance system and the common unemployment insurance mechanism. Moreover, the minister noted how intervention in these areas is fundamental for social stability in the face of increasing inequality, child poverty and underemployment. Fiscal policy should aim for stability yet also for fairness, otherwise, sustainability will remain elusive.

Mehreen Khan, from the Financial Times and Guntram Wolff were more cautious in their assessment of progress and potential ways forward. The ambitious social / fiscal goals are undercut by the plurality of views within the EU and technical progress is yet uncertain. Yet the minister kept an overall pragmatic attitude, noting lines are blurrier than what is believed externally. Differences of opinion are not insurmountable barriers to progress.
A second concern, also voiced by attendants, was the perceived lack of transparency and de-democratisation effects of EU institutions. The minister highlighted the EU institutions are accountable, since they are elected. Additionally, not only is citizen support already increasing, but it is bound to continue so, as Europeans feel the positive effects of reform. Mehreen Khan disagreed, pointing out engaged citizens see EU institutions as obstacles, not partners.

Surrounding EU-level welfare there was a recognition of its fundamental national character, meant to reflect political and social local priorities. Yet, coordination at the EU-level would be beneficial. The possibility of establishing a (heterogenous) minimum wage on EU countries was raised by one of the attendants. The minister, though agreeing it would be desirable, was not sure whether the EU should mandate it. Guntram Wolff highlighted how economists should revise their research on the effects on employment of establishing a minimum wage.

Schedule

Nov 6, 2018

14:00-14:30

Registration and coffee

14:30-14:40

Welcome remarks

Guntram B. Wolff, Director

14:40-15:40

Conversation with the Minister

Chair: Mehreen Khan, Brussels correspondent , Financial Times

Chair: Guntram B. Wolff, Director

Nadia Calviño, Minister of Economy and Business, Spain

15:40-16:00

Q&A

16:00

End

Speakers

Guntram B. Wolff

Director

Nadia Calviño

Minister of Economy and Business, Spain

Mehreen Khan

Brussels correspondent , Financial Times

Location & Contact

Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels

Giuseppe Porcaro

giuseppe.porcaro@bruegel.org +32 (0) 498 59 30 04

Read article Download PDF

Policy Contribution

The economic potential and risks of crypto assets: is a regulatory framework needed?

What is the economic potential and the risks of crypto assets? Regulators and supervisors have taken great interest in these new markets. This Policy Contribution is a version of a paper written at the request of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the informal ECOFIN meeting of EU finance ministers and central bank governors.

By: Maria Demertzis and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance, Testimonies Date: September 6, 2018
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Podcast

Podcast

Euro-area governance: Where next?

Bruegel deputy director Maria Demertzis hosts this episode of 'The Sound of Economics', with Gideon Rachman, chief foreign affairs correspondent at the Financial Times, and Manfred Weber, chair of the EPP Group in the European Parliament, joining Bruegel director Guntram Wolff for a discussion of the future of euro-area governance.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: March 1, 2018
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Opinion

The European Commission should drop its ill-designed idea of a finance minister

Beyond the opposing ideas of Jean-Claude Juncker and Wolfgang Schäuble for future euro-area governance, Guntram Wolff explores how alternatives such as a reformed Eurogroup might yield more effective fiscal policy-making.

By: Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: December 4, 2017
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

Catalonia and the Spanish banking system

As tensions rise around Catalonia's independence movement, there are worries about the impact on the Spanish banking sector. Banks based in Catalonia account for around 14% of total assets. Some major institutions are already moving their headquarters to other parts of Spain. However, most Spanish banks have significant exposure to the Catalan market, and all could be caught up in the turmoil.

By: Yana Myachenkova Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: October 6, 2017
Read article Download PDF

Policy Contribution

Europe’s role in North Africa: development, investment and migration

The authors of this Policy Contribution propose five ways in which EU policymakers can contribute to development in North Africa and build partnerships on trade, investment and migration.

By: Uri Dadush, Maria Demertzis and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global Economics & Governance, Testimonies Date: April 8, 2017
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

Credit recovery in Spain: NPL resolution was essential, but success depended on broader sector reform

Growth in Spain again exceeded expectations this year, and bank deleveraging appears to have reached an end. Addressing non-performing loans was a precondition for recovery, and it required comprehensive financial sector reform.

By: Alexander Lehmann Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: November 21, 2016
Read article Download PDF More on this topic

Policy Contribution

What are the prerequisites for a euro-area fiscal capacity?

In this Policy Contribution, Maria Demertzsis and Guntram B. Wolff discuss three progressive steps for strengthening the fiscal framework at the euro-area level. These lead to less interference in national fiscal policymaking thanks to a more credible no-bailout clause, increased risk sharing and different degrees of provision of euro-area-wide public goods and fiscal stabilisation.

By: Maria Demertzis and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: September 9, 2016
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

The IMF’s performance on financial sector aspects of the euro area crisis

The recently published in-depth evaluation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)’s role in the euro area crisis highlights important contrasts in the area of financial services. The IMF provided highly valuable analysis and recommendations to the EU on its banking sector and related policies. In individual countries (leaving aside Cyprus and the second Greek programme, not covered by this evaluation), the financial-sector aspects of the IMF’s interventions were highly successful in Ireland and Spain, ambiguous in Greece, and a missed opportunity in Portugal.

By: Nicolas Véron Topic: Finance & Financial Regulation Date: August 29, 2016
Read article Download PDF More on this topic More by this author

Policy Contribution

The IMF’s role in the euro-area crisis: financial sector aspects

Nicolas Véron reviews in-depth the role played by the IMF in understanding the financial-sector dynamics of the euro-area crisis. The IMF was the first public authority to acknowledge the role of the bank-sovereign vicious circle and to articulate a clear vision of banking union as an essential policy response. At national level, the IMF’s approach to the financial sector was appropriate and successful in Ireland and Spain, more limited in the Greek Stand-By Arrangement, and less compelling in Portugal.

By: Nicolas Véron Topic: Finance & Financial Regulation Date: August 29, 2016
Read article More on this topic

Blog Post

Spanish unemployment and the effects of the 2012 labour market reform

What’s at stake: Spain is currently the EU country with the second highest level of unemployment, after Greece. The high and persistent level of unemployment and the appropriate labour market reforms are a major topic of discussion in Spain. We review arguments made in the blogosphere and by international organisations on the reasons for Spain’s stubbornly high unemployment, and various assessments of the labour market reforms of 2012.

By: Alvaro Leandro and Jaume Martí Romero Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: July 4, 2016
Read about event More on this topic

Past Event

Past Event

The Spanish financial crisis: Lessons for the European banking union

Spain is among the countries still recovering from the financial crisis. While misjudged investments were part of the cause, these past mistakes could offer lessons for the European banking union.

Speakers: Miguel Otero-Iglesias, Federico Steinberg, Pia Hüttl, Stefano Neri and Bruegel Topic: Finance & Financial Regulation Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: June 9, 2016
Read article More on this topic

Blog Post

Brazil can learn from Spain: don't delay adjustment

Brazil’s economic crisis has much in common with Spain’s crisis from 2009 – 2012. The IMF and the global community must work together to ensure a stabilisation programme for Brazil before it is too late, as euro-area countries did with Spain. The credibility of policy adjustment is key.

By: Alicia García-Herrero and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: May 11, 2016
Load more posts