Ask an Economist: What is the Role of the EU?

Ilene Grabel

Triple Crisis Blog has invited readers’ questions in advance of the April 24-25 IMF/World Bank meetings in Washingon. See all of the questions and answers here. A reader asked:

Q: What is the role of the EU in the changing economic environment of the world?

Grabel: A couple of triple crisis entries have dealt with the EU and its relevance for the development community.  See, e.g., here, here, here and here.

In connection with the specific question posted here, I’d add that how the eurozone ultimately navigates its current difficulties (ranging from the severe contractions being experienced by economies such as Latvia and Estonia; the uncertain state of Greek affairs, particularly involving whether the country will ultimately have to draw on the funds now promised to it by other European countries or perhaps by the IMF with which it is talking now; and whether countries such as Portugal, Spain, and Italy eventually follow down the same road as Greece) will have important implications for the pace of a global recovery, a European economic recovery, and for discussions in the developing world about the form and institutional structure of new regional financial architectures.