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EU Fumbling on Cyprus Makes Rehn Scapegoat for Austerity




European Union Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn has emerged as the frontman for crisis-management policies driven out of Berlin that are spreading economic pain as debt turmoil reignites.

Rehn faced a torrent of criticism and a call to resign after helping broker a rescue package from Cyprus that fell apart on March 19 over a demand to raid bank deposits. He has become the defender of German-inspired austerity that helped deepen the 17-nation euro region’s recession. Almost two years after Rehn announced the “beginning of the end” of the debt crisis, the euro area is headed for a back-to-back annual economic contraction for the first time. Now, Rehn has become a scapegoat as Germany and the International Monetary Fund let the commissioner take the rap for the Cyprus bailout that hangs in limbo, said an EU official who declined to be named. “As soon as things go wrong, people start looking around for who to blame,” William White , former head of economic analysis at the Bank for International Settlements , said in a March 19 telephone interview. “Everybody will be pointing the finger.” The conflict over a country that makes up 0.2 percent of the euro […]

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  • EU Fumbling on Cyprus Makes Rehn Scapegoat for Austerity
  • EU Fumbling on Cyprus Makes Rehn Scapegoat for Austerity
  • EU Fumbling on Cyprus Makes Rehn Scapegoat for Austerity
  • EU Fumbling on Cyprus Makes Rehn Scapegoat for Austerity
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