Open Europe Blog


Former Dutch Internal Market Commissioner Frits Bolkesten is best known for having authored the liberalising EU Services Directive (in its original form before some member states and the EP watered it down significantly) but from today he has another claim to fame – becoming the first former European Commissioner to publicly back a breakup of the euro. Here is what he said to Dutch paper Algemeen Dagblad:

“The Netherlands has to exit the euro as quickly as possible… The monetary union has totally failed. The euro turned out to be a sleeping pill which made Europe doze off instead of thinking about our competitiveness… Let’s stop with the euro and instead strengthen the Single Market… We don’t need the euro for that.”

As an alternative, Bolkestein – who, it should be said, has long been critical of the current direction of the EU – proposed a currency union formed of economically strong countries, a so-called “Triple A euro”. Bolkestein also had some tough words for the European Parliament, arguing that:

“It is not representative anymore for Dutch and European citizens. It lives out a federal fantasy which is no longer sustainable.”

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