The Euro has been in years in the making. The Treaty of Rome (1957) declared a common European market as a European objective with the aim of increasing economic prosperity and contributing to "an ever closer union among the peoples of Europe". The Single European Act (1986) and the Treaty on European Union (1992) have built on this, introducing Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and laying the foundations for our single currency. The third stage of EMU began on 1st January 1999, when the exchange rates of the participating currencies were irrevocably set. Euro area Member States began implementing a common monetary policy, the euro was introduced as a legal currency and the 11 currencies of the participating Member States became subdivisions of the euro. Greece joined on 1st January 2001 and so 12 Member States introduced the new euro banknotes and coins at the beginning of this year. The successful development of the euro is central to the realization of a Europe in which people, services, capital and goods can move freely.
The introduction of the Euro is the largest monetary changeover the world has ever seen.
12 Member States of the European Union are participating in the common currency. They are Belgium, Germany, Greece, Spain, France, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Austria and Portugal. Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom are members of the European Union but are not currently participating in the single currency.
International trade takes place between countries, it takes place because of specialization, and hence, because of comparative advantage. Countries will specialize in the production of those items in which their comparative advantage is greatest. A country has a comparative advantage over another in the production of an item if it can produce that item at a lower opportunity cost. No barriers to trade...