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June 16 , 2010

Monetary Policy at the European Periphery

Greek Experience and Lessons for EU Candidates


At long last, monetary union has dawned in Europe. Eleven member states now share the common currency, forming a larger EMU than many observers, who thought that monetary union would initially be restricted to the core countries of the European Union, expected. The next item on the EMU agenda now is the question how to bring the remaining members of the European Union into the monetary union. I.A. Mourmouras and M. G. Arghyrou address this question from the perspective of Greece, and, with it, future European Union members such as Hungary and Poland. Their book presents a careful and interesting study of the Greek monetary policy experiences over the past 25 years. It demonstrates how Greece moved from an inflation­ ridden economy characterized by rigid controls of the financial sector to an economy for which an independent central bank and inflation targeting are credible options. The study is not only interesting in itself but also in that it bears important lessons for the development of monetary policy and institutions in the candidate countries of the European Union.

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