News / Europe

Europe's Economic Crisis Intensifies

A stock exchange monitor displays the market trends in Milan, Italy, November 9, 2011.
A stock exchange monitor displays the market trends in Milan, Italy, November 9, 2011.
Lisa Bryant

Europe's financial and political problems deepened, as stock markets tumbled, Italian bond yields rose over the political turmoil in Rome, and a new coalition government prepares to take over in Greece.

Related video report by Mil Arcega

The eurozone crisis has risen another notch with Italy's government heading for the door, stock markets plunging and Greece in crisis.

Outgoing Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou announced agreement with opposition lawmakers on a new coalition government that likely will have to carry out austerity measures demanded by the country's international creditors.

And, after hanging on for weeks, veteran Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi now says he will resign and not run for office again.  President Giorgio Napolitano must either work on forming a new government or call early elections.

Rome becomes the latest casualty of the financial crisis that already has brought down the governments of Portugal, Ireland and Greece.  But as Europe's third-largest economy, Italy's skyrocketing debt and deficit are viewed as far more serious.

Analyst Ben May, with London-based Capital Economics, said it will take more than political change to put Italy on a healthier path.

"It is not just that the current government is not up to the job, but Italy has huge structural problems that are going to take years to resolve," said May. "And that, given that backdrop, it may well be very difficult for Italy to get its debt on a stable footing either without huge amounts of assistance from abroad or some form of a deal."

Eurozone countries are now scrambling to build a firewall to contain the spreading debt crisis. In an interview on France's RFI radio, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said the goals were clear.

Juppe said it was out of the question for Europe to abandon either the 17-nation eurozone or the euro. His remarks appear targeted at speculation that Greece could leave the currency union.

The fast moving events have left analysts like Janis Emmanouilidis, of the Brussels-based European Policy Center, uncertain about where Europe is headed.

"What is obvious is that the crisis has again reached a new level, a new phase. At the same time we are seeing E.U. member states,  especially Berlin and Paris, Germany and France, ready to act more boldly than they have this summer... At the same time, we do not know whether this crisis has reached a size in which it has become unstoppable or whether we are in a way in the final phase of it," said Emmanouilidis.

Greece's new coalition government must meet EU terms for a new installment of aid by December. After that, Greek officials say, they will be unable to pay their bills.

You May Like

Video British Fighters On Frontline of ISIS Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Multimedia Hit Song Delivers Ebola Message in Liberia

'Ebola in Town' has danceable beat, while also delivering serious message about avoiding infection More

Video New Technology Gives Surgeons Unprecedented Views of Patients’ Bodies

Technology offers real-time, interactive, medical visualization and is multi-dimensional More

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.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid