Merkies: High time for a debate on our monetary system

12 February 2015

Merkies: High time for a debate on our monetary system

At the initiative of SP Member of Parliament Arnold Merkies, Parliament will shortly hold a debate on monetary policy. ‘It’s time that as politicians we don’t only look on from the sidelines, but continue to consider the fundamental questions concerning our monetary system,’ Merkies says. ‘How should we organise our monetary system? And how do we maintain control of it? All of these issues appear now to be taboo in the political arena.’

The European Central Bank (ECB) recently announced a series of radical measures. In a debate with the Finance Minister prior to this announcement, the Minister gave evasive answers whenever he was questioned about ECB policy. According to him, politicians should meddle in these matters as little as possible. At the same time the ECB is increasingly taking the role of politicians and heads of national banks are coming out more and more often with policy advice.

'It’s odd that central banks on the one hand interfere a great deal in politics and yet on the other hand politicians don’t want to give their opinions,’ says Merkies. ‘This should be something we discuss. The rules of the monetary policy were established some time ago and in a period when the current situation could not be foreseen. The ECB needs now to improvise far more often and take unconventional measures. These measures have major consequences, not only for banks and for our monetary system, but also for our economy as a whole. For this reason alone, as politicians we must not shy away from the discussion on this matter.'

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