Wer hat Europa verloren?

CAMBRIDGE – Der Finanzkollaps in Europa ist abgewendet worden – vorerst. Die Zukunft der Europäischen Union und das Schicksal der Eurozone sind jedoch nach wie vor in der Schwebe. Wenn Europa keinen Weg findet die Wirtschaft des Kontinentes bald zu reaktivieren, wird es über Jahre zu gedrückter Stimmung und gegenseitigen Schuldzuweisungen verdammt sein, „wer das europäische Projekt sabotiert hat“.

Europa hat 2009 einen schlimmeren Zusammenbruch erlitten als die Vereinigten Staaten und die europäische Wirtschaft steht vor einer wesentlich schleppenderen Erholung – wenn man es so nennen kann. Für dieses Jahr erwartet der Internationale Währungsfonds ein Wachstum von nur 1% für die Eurozone und im Jahr 2011 rechnet er mit 1,5%, verglichen mit 3,1 und 2,6% für die USA. Sogar Japan, das sich seit den Neunzigerjahren in einer tiefen Krise befindet, wird ein schnelleres Wachstum prognostiziert als Europa.

Das europäische Wachstum wird von Schuldenproblemen und anhaltender Besorgnis über die Zahlungsfähigkeit von Griechenland und anderen hoch verschuldeten EU-Mitgliedern gehemmt. Während der private Sektor den Grad seiner Verschuldung reduziert und versucht seine Bilanzen zu sanieren, sind der Konsum und die Investitionsnachfrage eingebrochen und verursachen damit auch Rückgänge in der Produktion. Abgesehen von Sparmaßnahmen haben europäische Spitzenpolitiker bisher keine Lösung für das Wachstumsproblem vorgeschlagen.

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