European Central Bank President Mario Draghi caused amusement as he tried — not very successfully — to speak German while addressing the European Parliament, but his assessment of the future of the euro zone’s economy was no laughing matter: it was that usual grim ECB phrase “substantial downside risks”.
On the euro’s future he was more upbeat: “I have no doubt whatsoever about the strength of the euro, about its permanence, about its irreversibility. Let’s not forget that this was a key word at the time of the Maastricht Treaty. The one currency is irreversible.”
He made those reassuring comments in response to questions about an interview with the Financial Times in which he had warned of the costs of a eurozone break-up.
Speaking about the calls from various government for the bank to help tame the sovereign debt by buying more government bonds, Draghi stress that they are not allowed to do that under the terms of the EU treaty.