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Europe officials urge action over euro

Thursday, May 31, 2012 - 01:34

May 31 - The ECB's President and EU economy commissioner warn of collapse of the currency unless the Euro zone countries go the next step towards fiscal unity. Joanne Nicholson reports

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It was a sharp wake-up call to European leaders, passed down by the European Central Bank President, Mario Draghi. He says the Euro zone countries need to clarify their vision for the single currency before it's too late: (SOUNDBITE) (English) EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK PRESIDENT, MARIO DRAGHI, SAYING: "That configuration that we had with us by and large for ten years which was basically considered sustainable, I should say, I should add in a perhaps biotic way, is being shown now to be unsustainable unless further steps are being undertaken." The proposal is to have centralised banking supervision and a European deposit scheme. But Germany is firmly opposed. It comes at a time when Spain's troubled banking system poses a threat to the rest of Europe. The EU's economic affairs commissioner says unless government debts are brought down, Europe runs the risk of the currency bloc falling apart (SOUNDBITE) (English) EU ECONOMIC AND MONETARY AFFAIRS COMMISSIONER, OLLI REHN, SAYING: "We want to avoid a disintegration of the euro zone and instead make the euro survive and succeed for the sake of its member states and especially for their citizens." Rehn says fiscal consolidation should be the priority not discussions about Euro bonds. But centralising finances is feared by many because it also means countries surrendering some of their sovereignty. Joanne Nicholson, Reuters

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Europe officials urge action over euro

Thursday, May 31, 2012 - 01:34