Full text: 'Eurozone plus' statement
Friday 9 December 2011 - by European Council
The European Union and the euro area have done much over the past 18 months to improve economic governance and adopt new measures in response to the sovereign debt crisis.
1. The stability and integrity of the Economic and Monetary Union and of the European Union as a whole require the swift and vigorous implementation of the measures already agreed as well as further qualitative moves towards a genuine "fiscal stability union" in the euro area. Alongside the single currency, a strong economic pillar is indispensable.
It will rest on an enhanced governance to foster fiscal discipline and deeper integration in the internal market as well as stronger growth, enhanced competitiveness and social cohesion. To achieve this objective, we will build on and enhance what has been achieved in the past 18 months: the enhanced Stability and Growth Pact, the implementation of the European Semester starting this month, the new macro-economic imbalances procedure, and the Euro Plus Pact.
2. With this overriding objective in mind, and fully determined to overcome together the current difficulties, we agreed today on a new "fiscal compact" and on significantly stronger coordination of economic policies in areas of common interest.
3. This will require a new deal between euro area Member States to be enshrined in common, ambitious rules that translate their strong political commitment into a new legal framework.
A new fiscal compact
4. We commit to establishing a new fiscal rule, containing the following elements:
• General government budgets shall be balanced or in surplus; this principle shall be deemed respected if, as a rule, the annual structural deficit does not exceed 0.5% of nominal GDP.
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