News / Europe

    EU Leaders to Continue Search for Economic Answers

    European Council President Herman Van Rompuy during a news conference at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid, Spain, July 12, 2011
    European Council President Herman Van Rompuy during a news conference at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid, Spain, July 12, 2011

    European leaders may hold another crisis summit on the struggling eurozone as early as Friday. The euro currency area is experiencing another grim week - and America's own debt problems only add to the uncertainty.

    More bleak news for 17-nation eurozone. This week, Moody's ratings agency cutting Ireland's debt rating to junk status - echoing similar action targeting Portugal last week. It predicts both countries will need a second bailout - like fellow eurozone member Greece.

    Speaking from Spain Tuesday, European Union president Herman Van Rompuy sought to calm jittery markets.

    "I am fully aware of the current tensions in the debt markets. But let me be very clear that there is a very strong commitment at the highest level to do whatever is necessary to safeguard the financial stability of the euro area," said Rompuy. "Leaders have to [rise] above their domestic political agendas and they will."

    But European finance ministers meeting in Brussels earlier this week failed to come up with a clear plan of action. That might be left up to EU leaders, if they hold emergency talks on Friday.

    At issue - how much the private sector should contribute to another Greek bailout and whether to completely overhaul the bloc's bailout fund to make it more flexible.

    Gilles Moec, London-based co-head of European Economics Research for Deutsche Bank, says private sector involvement is mainly a political issue. "The idea - especially in the core [eurozone] countries - is to say the taxpayer should not be the only actor in the system having to pay for the bailout," said Moec.

    Results from so-called stress tests of European banks are due out this week -- and they should show banks' resilience in limiting the spreading crisis - and their ability to contribute to a bailout.

    While unlikely, chances the United States could default on its massive debt is another concern. U.S. central bank chief Ben Bernanke has warned such a scenario could trigger a major world crisis.

    "All these discussions about the debt ceiling in the U.S. are clearly not helping in the sense that it's adding another layer of anxiety in the situation, which is already complicated enough," said Again Deutsche Bank's Gilles Moec.

    A more immediate worry, says Bruegel think tank researcher Benedicta Marzinoto, are fears larger European economies will be pulled into the eurozone debt crisis. Markets nosedived this week over fears about the health of the Italian and Spanish economies.

    "Things have certainly deteriorated, because financial markets are attacking large markets like Italy and Spain. I'm more concerned about the two big countries than about the downgrading of Ireland - which in a sense was inevitable, if you think of a contagion from Greece," said Marzinoto.

    Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has vowed to swiftly push through a contentious austerity bill. The initial reaction by analysts has been positive. But they say the EU still must come up with a long-term strategy for the eurozone - and there are fears that tough decisions may be pushed back until the fall.

    You May Like

    Hope Remains for Rio Olympic Games

    Facing a host of problems, Rio prepares for holding the games but experts say some risks, like Zika, may not be as grave as initially thought

    IS Use of Social Media to Recruit, Radicalize Still a Top Threat to US

    Despite military gains against IS in Iraq and Syria, their internet propaganda still commands an audience; US officials see 'the most complex challenge that the federal government and industry face'

    ‘Time Is Now’ to Save Africa’s Animals From Poachers, Activist Says

    During Zimbabwe visit, African Wildlife Foundation President Kaddu Sebunya says poaching hurts Africa as slave trade once did

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora