A delegation of members of the European Parliament's Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) attended the Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank in Washington D.C. from 6 - 9 October.
After the meetings, delegation leader Roberto Gualtieri (S&D, IT) made the following statement:
"We have been struck by the way the so-called political risks deriving from populism have featured in the discussions at the IMF this year. I agree with the IMF assessment that euro area monetary policy must be complemented by structural reforms and a quality-led fiscal policy in order to relaunch growth and address the output gap in some Member States in a consistent way. In our meetings with the IMF there was a sense that we should not lose the momentum towards deepening the EMU. Regarding Greece and debt relief, euro area interlocutors reiterated their commitment to implement the Eurogroup statement of 25 May 2016 aiming at delivering debt relief at the end of the programme in mid-2018. Brexit was also raised at several meetings. I can only reiterate what many others have already said: access to the single Market goes hand in hand with the fundamental EU freedoms, without cherry-picking."
Apart from ECON chairman Roberto Gualtieri, the delegation included Pablo Zalba Bidegain (EPP, ES), Werner Langen (EPP, DE), Siegfried Muresan (EPP, RO), Pervenche Berès (S&D, FR), Jakob von Weizsäcker (S&D, DE) and Bernd Lucke (ECR, DE). The members met with IMF Executive Directors and high ranking officials for discussions on the European economic and fiscal situation, financial stability, the financial assistance programme in Greece and on economic governance of the euro area. It also held bilateral discussions with the Spanish Finance Minister, Luis de Guindos and the Portuguese Finance and Treasury Secretary, Ricardo Mourinho Félix, regarding the follow-up to the possible suspension of European funds to Spain and Portugal in the context of the on-going excessive deficit procedure.
LIST OF MEETINGS (in chronological order)
EU Ambassador David O’SULLIVAN
Commission Vice-President Valdis DOMBROVSKIS
Maurice OBSTFELD, IMF Chief Economist
Hervé de VILLEROCHÉ, IMF Executive Director (France)
Stephen FIELD, IMF Executive Director (UK)
James HALEY, IMF Executive Director (Canada)
Cyril MULLER, World Bank VP for Europe and Central Asia
Axel VAN TROTSENBURG, World Bank VP of Development Finance
Jeff HURLEY, Committee Director for State-Federal Relations at the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL)
David SILBERMAN, Deputy Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Nicolas VERON, Visiting Fellow at the Peterson Institute
Rasmus RUEFFER, Permanent Representative of the ECB in Washington DC
Luis DE GUINDOS JURADO, Minister of Economy and Competitiveness of Spain
Ricardo MOURINHO, State Secretary of Treasury and Finance of Portugal
Klaus REGLING, Managing Director of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM)
Ratna SAHAY, IMF Deputy Director, Monetary and Capital Markets Department
Carlo COTTARELLI, IMF Executive Director (Italy)
Fernando JIMÉNEZ LATORRE, IMF Executive Director (Spain)
Mahmood PRADHAN, IMF Deputy Director, European Department