Published on 26 Oct 2011

An extraordinary shambles in Brussels

For so important a meeting, it’s an incredible shambles here in Brussels. Many reporters came in anticipation of real figures being deployed in a package of solutions to the eurozone crisis.

But it could be that tonight will see a conclusion of the summit of eurozone leaders without a serious figure in sight.

It seems more likely that economics will give way to politics, and politics will speak of the parameters that an eventual economic solution will adhere to.

The Germans have succeeded in preventing the European Central Bank from becoming a dumping ground for euro-debt which can be used and abused to Germany’s cost. Chinese and Brazilian sovereign funds seem to be in play, together potentially with a much bigger IMS involvement.

David Cameron is here, but without any voice in the euro deliberations. And actually, Britain stands to have to contribute more through its IMF membership.

It’s a funny old world. The meeting started half an hour late, is said to be going to last an hour, and then they have dinner – and then they go home.

If we are still here at four in the morning, one of two things is happening: either there is a desperate bid to stave off a total breakdown or there is a desperate bid to clinch a deal, against all expectations.

It’s amazingly tense, the Germans and the French calling the shots and the Italians swimming around, looking for any sort of flotsam to cling onto as their own political and economic crisis deepens by the hour.

It is extraordinary, being a bystander at such an event.

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6 reader comments

  1. adrian clarke says:

    It is only a shambles because such a diverse group of countries can not effectivelyhave a single currency without having total political union.All the more reason we in Britain should have our say as to whether we want to stay in this Union at all.
    Being outside the Euro ,gives us no influence ,but opens us up to serious monetary problems not of our own making.If there is to be greater political union ,such as a federation , we would not i believe agree to it in these isles.So what is the point hanging on the sidelines , powerless to do anything ,yet still being ruled by a group of per crazy French and German politicians.
    Lets get out and get out now.It is time we had a leader with the guts to say enough is enough,let the British people decide

  2. CP says:

    Just now on C4 News in your interview with Marcsu Kerber you ask why doesn’t the ECB do what a “proper central bank” should do when its currency is under pressure.

    Snowman – I think your great – but what ARE you talking about. Commentators here and in the US MUST start to understand that the ECB does not have to steal form its people by debasing their currency just because the Fed and BoE have. The ECB and European politicians are entitled to do what they what.

    I applaud them for attempting to preserve the value of EUR denominated assets and monetary wealth, something that lays the foundations for stability and investment far more than QE does.

    BoE policy makers such as Adam Possen today are fully within their rights to argue that QE and money printing is not stealing from all holders of GBP and GBP assets, however to state that this policy is “proper” just because we in the UK are stupid enough to allow it shows your complete lack of understanding of money and the monetary system.

    What a shame their are so many financially illiterate happy to be fleeced by Mervin Kings BoE. Lets see how the EUR compares with the pound in another 5-Years and what its buying power is.

    1. sam says:

      CP is right its like watching the fall of the roman empire,we have greed, corruption and to top it all you have company directors being awarded a 49% pay rise and then telling the people how important they to the economy, do they mean like fred the shred, wake up folks you only have to take a look at the BoE to see they couldnt forecast rain in the middle of a monsoon but they will tell you how important the job is for all they cant do it.

  3. Anthony Dwomoh says:

    Please let’s try as much as we can to live according to our means to avoid another catastrophy.

    1. Mudplugger says:

      Can you please rewrite the above in Greek, Italian, Portugese, Spanish and English (for the Irish and the Ed Balls, obviously).
      A German version would be redundant.

  4. archibald gruntfuttock says:

    Under normal circumstances, its inaccurate to even call this an ‘EU summit’. they are in effect, as a whole, negotiating with the banks the best way forward. That is not free and open debate to solve the debt problem.

    Now how do I think that will turn out?

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