The Euro may cease to exist in 10 years without significant economic reforms, mainly by France and Germany, according to French presidential candidate and former economy minister Emmanuel Macron.
Macron, a 39-year-old French politician who resigned from his post as economy minister under President Francois Hollande last year, formed the political movement “En Marche!” (Foward!) to pursue his own centrist political agenda.
He has been steadily gaining popularity in recent polls, where he comes in third, close behind Marine Le Pen of the far-right National Front, and the leader, the Republican Party’s Francois Fillon.
According to economists worldwide polled by Reuters in December, the upcoming elections in Germany, France, and the Netherlands pose a potential threat to the euro, which could further challenge the EU status quo in 2017, adding to the economic effects from the planned UK exit from the Union.
“The truth is that we must collectively recognize that the euro is incomplete and cannot last without major reforms,” Macron said in a speech at Humboldt University in Berlin on Tuesday, as cited by Reuters.
An outspoken advocate of European integration, Macron also mentioned the lack of trust between France and Germany, which in his words is hindering euro zone reforms which could bolster solidarity among its 19 members and strengthen the euro. Likening the current status of the single currency to “a weak Deutsche Mark,” he said the creation of a euro zone budget could save the day for the euro. This budget could finance growth-oriented investments throughout the bloc and assist member states with weaker economies.
“I could tell you that Europe is out of date – it would be easier. Talking about turning the tables and using hard talk against Germans seems to be great politics in my country.
“We need a political willingness to move forward,” the politician also noted.
Macron said that if elected, he would back “strong” reforms and push for cooperation with Germany.
“There is a French responsibility to fix the situation. I will assume my responsibilities. France will assume its responsibilities. And I do trust Germany,” he said.