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Slovenia Business Week no. 23: Eurozone Members Should Sync Their Reforms, IMF Expert Says

Members of the eurozone could eliminate transitional costs of national reforms aimed at achieving the goals of the Lisbon Strategy if they synchronised them, Luc Everaert of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in Kranjska Gora

Members of the eurozone could eliminate transitional costs of national reforms aimed at achieving the goals of the Lisbon Strategy if they synchronised them, Luc Everaert of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in Kranjska Gora on Thursday, 14 June.

Everaert, speaking at an international conference on national reforms for the implementation of the Lisbon Strategy, said that some results of national reforms were already bringing results. However, he added that these reforms were long-term and could even cause transitional costs for the labour and services markets in the short run.

Simulations have shown that reforms of the labour and the service sectors could result in significant transitional costs if the monetary policy cannot react efficiently, be it because of the monetary union or the fixed exchange rate. Synchronisation of reforms could eliminate those costs, he added.

The participants of the two-day conference, organised by the Institute for Macroeconomic Analyses and Development (IMAD), a government think-tank, were addressed by Gert Jan Koopman, director of the European Commission's Enterprise and Industry Directorate.

According to Koopman, the Lisbon Strategy has begun bearing fruit. While the progress is not as ambitious as the Commission wants, economic results are consistent with the reforms that the countries undertook, he added.

He believes that the central challenge for the EU is increasing investment in research and development, reducing the administrative load and improving the effectiveness of labour. If the EU states manage to cut red tape by a quarter, they can increase the speed of economic growth by 1.3% by 2025, he said.

The 10th IMAD conference that took part alongside the 38th Conference on Medium-Term Economic Assessment (CMTEA), was attended by over 100 experts from 23 EU countries, as well as representatives of the European Commission and the IMF.

Source: Slovenian Press Agency STA

Author: STA, Slovenian National Press Agency