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In graphics: Eurozone in crisis

May 26, 2010

From BBC News:

One of the main causes of the currency crisis in the eurozone is that virtually all countries involved have breached their own self-imposed rules.

Under the convergence criteria adopted as part of economic and monetary union, government debt must not exceed 60% of GDP at the end of the fiscal year. Likewise, the annual government deficit must not exceed 3% of GDP. However, as the maps show, only two of the 16 eurozone countries – Luxembourg and Finland – have managed to stick to both rules.

Overall, Greece is the worst offender, with debt at 115.1% of GDP and a deficit of 13.6% of GDP. But among the bigger economies, Italy’s debt is even higher than Greece’s as a percentage of GDP, while Spain’s deficit is 11.2% of GDP. If the UK were in the eurozone, it would also fall foul of the criteria, with its debt now standing at 68.1% of GDP and its deficit at 11.5% of GDP.

In terms of economic size, Germany is the powerhouse of Europe, followed by the UK, France and Italy, while Malta is easily the smallest eurozone economy. The UK is shown in grey on the map because it does not belong to the eurozone, but it is easily the biggest EU economy not to have adopted the euro.

If you look at the eurozone members in terms of GDP per head, a different picture emerges. Luxembourg is far and away the league leader in this ranking. In fact, it is the richest country in the world on this measure, with Bermuda and Norway in second and third place.

The eurozone economy accounts for more than three-quarters of the EU’s overall GDP. The EU as a whole vies with the US for the title of the world’s biggest economy, with each accounting for about 20% of global GDP. [More]

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One Comment leave one →
  1. May 28, 2010 1:56 AM

    I appreciate the data presentation here, thanks for clarifying to me about the rules adopted. I’d factor this in my next write ups about Eurozone problems.

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