Not a day passes at the moment without news about the deteriorating state of the Eurozone. According to Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, we are seeing Europe’s toughest hour since the war. But wouldn’t one expect at some point to read about solutions? Or is it quite alright that wherever one turns to, to be offered a different opinion and viewpoint? Germany wants to create a “political union step by step” to save the single currency, Mr Cameron rather sees the need for the European Union to be as “flexible as a network, not as rigid as a bloc”. That’s just two opinions…quo vadis Europe?
And then there are obviously also Greece and Italy, two countries nowadays only famous for their value in terms of tourism, but not so much for their flourishing economies, which have recently failed to calm the markets despite changing their respective leaderships. The question remains if Mr Papademos and Mr Monti will be able to set a new direction to steer flagship Europe into calmer waters….so again, quo vadis Europe?
Oh, and then there were other problems. Yes, there are potentially other problems in the Western hemisphere apart from the Eurozone crisis. Imagine for a second that all those directives, new regulations and taxes -either already in place or proposed- lead to an exodus of financial workers in Europe. Too much utopia? Well, City workers for example have said for years that they are quite flexible where to work, and recent surveys have shown that if the work conditions become too “horrible”, they’d head off to (preferably) Asia in an instant. Imagine the City without bankers! And even imagine if that exodus was really going to happen in the financial centres across the Eurozone then (knowing that the City of London’s contribution to the national income is estimated at 2.4% of the total, while financial services represent 19.5% of total national income, or gross value added, in the whole of London)… quo vadis Europe?
It seems that wherever Europe is heading, the way won’t exactly be paved with red rose petals. Frankly, there probably aren’t too many who’d like to switch places with Mrs Merkel, Mr Monti, Mr Papademos and all those other unnamed leaders and CEOs, who are not exactly having a “hell of a time” at the moment. Quo vadis Europe – only time will tell.