Main Results of the Eurogroup Meeting

The Eurogroup meeting took place in two formats: the first part was a regular meeting of the euro area ministers, while the second part was a meeting of the ministers of 27 EU member states with the aim of preparing the December Euro Summit.

In September, President Tusk announced that the Euro Summit, which is expected to discuss matters related to the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), would take place in an inclusive format. This includes the euro area member states and the non-euro area member states which have signed the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union (TSCG). The Czech Republic and Croatia have been invited as observers.

Letter from President Donald Tusk to EU leaders ahead of their informal dinner in Tallinn (press release)

Meeting in euro area format

Banking union – euro area aspects

The Chair of the European Central Bank’s Supervisory Board, Danièle Nouy, presented an overview of the ECB Supervisory Board’s activities since April 2017.

Ms Nouy gave an overview of the recent supervisory work and highlighted the recent addendum to the March 2017 ECB guidance to banks on non-performing loans (NPLs), possible risks related to Brexit, and other key activities, such as supervisory stress tests.

The ECB Supervisory Board’s activities are presented at the Eurogroup biannually.

The Chair of the Single Resolution Board (SRB), Elke König, informed the Eurogroup about the SRB’s activities over the past months: progress on resolution planning and priorities in this area, implementation of the minimum requirements for own funds and eligible liabilities (MREL) and the status of the building-up of the single resolution fund (SRF).

Single Supervisory Mechanism (background information)

Single Resolution Mechanism (background information)

Thematic discussion on growth and jobs: investment in human capital

Ministers exchanged national practices related to public investment in human capital and, more concretely, efficient spending on education systems.

This discussion is linked to the common principles to promote investment, on which agreement was reached by the Eurogroup in April 2017. According to one of these principles, the euro area needs to ensure high-quality public investment to boost knowledge-intensive and sustainable growth.

The debate is also related to the Eurogroup’s discussion on the quality of public finances and spending reviews.

Ministers are expected to continue the debate in early 2018.

Commission note: Investment in human capital

Eurogroup statement on common principles to promote investment (press release)

Eurogroup statement – thematic discussions on growth and jobs: common principles for improving expenditure allocation (press release)

Greece

The institutions (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the European Stability Mechanism) briefly informed the Eurogroup about the constructive talks they have had so far with the Greek authorities in the context of the ongoing third review of Greece’s macroeconomic adjustment programme.

The Eurogroup is expected to discuss the third review in more detail at its meeting on 4 December 2017.

Greece: the third economic adjustment programme (background information)

Eurogroup Presidency

The incumbent President, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, briefly outlined the envisaged process for electing a new Eurogroup President. Interested ministers will be able to put forward their candidacy later in November. The Eurogroup is scheduled to elect a new president at its meeting on 4 December 2017.

Meeting in inclusive format

Completing the banking union

The ministers of 27 EU member states discussed possible steps towards the completion of the banking union. The Commission presented the main elements of its recent communication on this topic.

In June 2016, the Council concluded a roadmap to complete the banking union. In June 2017, the Council Presidency presented a progress report on the ongoing work on measures to strengthen the banking union and reduce risks in the banking sector.

Commission Communication: Completing the banking union

Further steps in the banking union: risk reduction and deposit protection (background information)

Fiscal capacity and fiscal rules for the EMU

Ministers exchanged views on the future of fiscal governance in the euro area, including issues related to fiscal rules and ideas for possible new euro area fiscal policy instruments.

Compliments of the European Commission