Spain, Ireland, Luxembourg fight for work

This combination of archive images taken on June 10, 2020 shows (LR) to the Luxembourg Minister of Finance, Pierre Gramegna, on December 4, 2017, in Brussels; The Minister of Economic Affairs of Spain, Nadia Calvino, on June 8, 2018 in Madrid; and Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe on October 8, 2019 in Dublin.


The finance ministers of Spain, Luxembourg and Ireland are vying to become the next head of the euro zone at a time when the region is facing one of the most severe economic crises in history.

The Eurogroup, a meeting that brings together the 19 finance ministers of nations that share the euro, is looking for a new president as Mario Centeno, the Portuguese socialist finance minister, will end his term on July 13 after two years -half-year.

Nadia Calvino from Spain, Paschal Donohoe from the Republic of Ireland and Pierre Gramegna from Luxembourg are the three candidates for the position. The first to have 10 or more votes from the 19 ministers on July 9 becomes the new chief.

The Eurogroup approved in April plans to provide 540 billion euros ($ 605 billion) in fiscal measures to mitigate the economic impact of the pandemic. However, there are more negotiations for more stimulus measures, after the European Commission, the executive arm of the EU, suggested raising 750 billion euros in public markets and giving that cash to the member states and sectors that have most been affected by the pandemic. .

This plan has created different opinions among the 19 euro countries, but also among the European Union in general. Some nations are concerned that the plan is overly generous in distributing € 500 billion in grants and require specific commitments on which each country will work to restore public finances. Other governments, distrustful of public opinion, do not want the fiscal stimulus to come in the form of rescue packages, as was the case during the 2011 sovereign debt crisis with the so-called Troika.

These differences could play a role when eurozone ministers vote on a new Eurogroup president next month.

The incoming boss will have to deal with these divisions, while also addressing the recovery phase. One of the big open questions is how member states will pay off the new debt.

Furthermore, the new Eurogroup leader will also face external challenges, such as a decrease in international trade, new agreements with the United Kingdom and tensions with the United States over digital taxes.