Adoptar el Euro y avanzar

Para los ocho países post-comunistas que la UE promete admitir en 2004, unirse a su Unión Económica y Monetaria (UEM) tiene vinculada una obligación. A diferencia del Reino Unido o Dinamarca, los nuevos miembros no pueden negarse a adoptar el euro. Sólo pueden controlar cuándo lo harán, lo que en principio podría ser apenas dos años después de la admisión en la UE.

Obviamente, aceptar el Tratado de Maastricht, con sus duras limitaciones a las políticas fiscal, monetaria y salarial, es mucho más que una decisión económica. Pero en el análisis final, la convicción (o la falta de ella) de que unirse a la UEM traerá importantes beneficios económicos es la fuerza que probablemente guiará las decisiones acerca de si se debe adoptar el euro tan pronto como sea posible.

La UEM se fundó sobre la idea, planteada por primera vez por el premio Nobel Robert Mundell, de que los costos y beneficios de la integración monetaria dependen de si los países comparten ciertas propiedades o no. Un grupo de países caracterizados por la apertura económica, el comercio y la integración de mercados financieros, estructuras económicas similares, flexibilidad en los precios y salarios, movilidad laboral y otros factores de producción puede, según esta visión, formar un área monetaria óptima (AMO)

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