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Fourth draft of austerity treaty even more draconian

21 January, 2012

Speaking following the leaking of the fourth draft of the Eurozone Austerity Treaty Sinn Féin European Affairs spokesperson Senator Kathryn Reilly described the latest draft as ‘even more draconian’ than its predecessor.

Senator Reilly said:

“The fourth draft of the Eurozone austerity treaty is even more draconian than its predecessor. Changes in the text seek to force member states to meet the 0.5% deficit ceiling at greater speed than previous versions. The text also talks for the first time about financial penalties for failing to meet this target and stronger enforcement mechanisms.

“All of this means deeper levels of austerity to be imposed on member states deemed to be in breach of these draconian deficit and debt rules and harsher penalties for non compliance.

“There is also a new call for a single EU economic policy which means that in addition to the failed one-size fits all monetary policy we will be faced with a one-size fits all economic policy. There is little doubt that this policy will be determined, like existing monetary policy, on the basis of the needs of the larger member states and to the detriment of smaller countries such as Ireland.

“Draft four toughens the language on the link between treaty ratification and access to future European Stability Mechanism bailout funds. This is not only legally questionable but a clear attempt to bully countries such as Ireland into accepting the terms of the treaty irrespective of the costs to citizens.

“And, significantly, the softer language on the requirement for the balanced budget rule to be placed in member states’ constitutions which was inserted into the third draft of the treaty at the request of the Irish government remains. Clearly the government has managed, despite German objections, to convince enough of its European partners that a referendum in Ireland is to be avoided at all costs.

“Draft four of the Eurozone austerity treaty is even worse than earlier drafts which is why the Government is doing everything in its power to prevent the people from having their say in a referendum.” ENDS

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