Euro Money
To most people in the United States hearing the word Euro brings about blank
stares. Ask this same question in England or another European country and it
means bringing Europe together under one common currency. The Euro can be
defined as the common monetary system by which the participating members of the

European Community will trade. Eleven countries Germany, France, Spain,

Portugal, Ireland, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Finland and

Italy will comprise the European Economic Monetary Union that will set a side
their national currency and adopt the Euro in 2002. A new National bank, based
in Frankfurt Germany, will be constructed and the interest rates that control
the economies of these nations will be in the hands of this new system. It is
indeed a great experiment, being masterminded in Frankfurt, one that will be
felt through out Europe as well as the rest of the world.1 The combined
countries, now more commonly referred to as Euroland, will fall under one
national bank. This bank, the European Central Bank, will determine the economic
fate of the entire "Union". The merging of eleven currencies is a daunting
and somewhat lethal task. The ECB is comprised of seventeen members, each having
one vote within the governing council. What has most Europeans concerned is the

ECBís secrecy of conducting business. There is no voting record nor will there
be published minutes of the meeting that take place. Wim Duisenberg president of
the ECB and a native Dutchman stated that he wanted the ECB to be one of the
most open banks in the world.1 When BBC reporter Steve Levinson confronted him
about this in Frankfurt Germany Wim replied I reconcile these two positions by
not defining openness as publishing everything that will be available, but by
defining openness as explaining every decision, every consideration. Also the
pros and cons and to be very open about that and to be frequent and immediate in
that openness. (Livinston, Euroland 3) Why does the ECB operation so much
secrecy? Is does not want economic policy moved by political influence. In

January of this year the Bank of Ireland became a regional branch of the ECB.

Morris OíConnell, its governor, supports the ECBís tight lips stating I
donít think itís appropriate that you should be announcing how each person
may have voted. I think youíre creating other pressures then, youíre
creating pressure on individual members to reflect just the national viewpoint.

Where we are required under this treaty to take a European perspective on
things. (Livinson 5) This treaty OíConnell refers to is the Maastrich Treaty.

It is the foundation for holding together the ECB and the fait of the Euro. It
was constructed in such a way that is completely out of reach of the
politicians. This way, national views of one country will not effect the entire
economic view of the European Economic Monetary Union. One view is certain now,
the Euro will happen and the ECB will be driving the train. What is good for the
whole may not be good for the parts. This statement sums up the difficulty of
bringing the Euro into reality. Topping the concern is the setting of interest
rates through out the EMU. Interest rates normalize any economy and are the
foundations of them as well. But does one interest rate in Ireland function the
same in Germany? When one economic country is in economic crises how will the

ECB react? These are just a few of the many economic problems that will have to
be solved, as the day of the Euro becomes closer and closer. Both businesses
within the European Economic Monetary Union and outside of it as well, will feel
the impact of the Euro. Although currency has yet to be coined, today trade
using the Euro has begun. The conversion rates have been set for the eleven
nations that will partake. If business outside of the EMU thinks that they will
be unaffected by the Euro they have a surprise in store. When it fully takes
effect all trade for gods and services will be conducted with the Euro.

Companies that trade within the EMU will no longer have to worry about costly
conversion rates and delays that is inherent when using different currency for
business. As far as trade goes there will be no boarders. Countries that refuse
to trade in the Euro may have difficulties. At some point in time they will
receive payment for goods or services from an EMU country. If they are not
prepared to deal with the EURO they