By Kubra Turk
Christopher Alessi indicates that in the long path of European integration, the eurozone as a crowning achievement has been buffeted by a sovereign debt crisis of nations whose membership in the currency union has been poorly addressed in terms of policies. As a result, eurozone unemployment rises in accordance with the weak policies and has a tendency to increase.
In this regard, Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics agency, reports that the number of jobless people in seventeen countries that use the euro increased from 162,000 to 17.134 million in February, marking the highest number since January 1995 when the first data was complied. Such a high number people without jobs pushed the unemployment rate to10.8% of the work force, which is also the highest rate since June 1997 and is an increase from 10.7% last January.
Martin Van Vliet as an economist at ING Bank, states that these numbers “make for grim reading and cast a dark cloud over growth prospects for the region.” Thus, the countries which are heavily affected by the debt crisis, such as Greece and Spain, are suffering the most from the rapid rise in joblessness. The unemployment rate in Greece was 21% in December whereas in Spain it was 23.6% in February, and all of these numbers are likely to have risen since then.
With the aim of forming a solution to the current crisis, eurozone finance ministers gathered in Copenhagen on March 30, and agreed to provide 700 billion euros. However, as Paul Hannon and Alex Brittain indicate, “with economies across the currency bloc flagging, governments will likely find it tougher to cut debt and bring the crisis to an end.” In this context, questions regarding what kind of solution can stop the current crisis or whether there is any possible solution to be utilized are put forward