Stability and Growth Pact: No appropriate Strategy for Consolidation
In the last years public budgets in the EU worsened more an more. Especially when considering the demographic development in western industrial countries and, thus, increasing pressures on public spending, these findings are distressing. Consolidation can either be achieved by a sequence of discretionary policy decisions or be the result of a fiscal rule – whereas the last seems to be predominant. Creating the Stability and Growth Pact the EU decided to establish a fiscal rule. This rule, which apparently has failed to reign in public deficits. So a reforming debate has recently started. The superiority of a rule crucially depends on whether it is well defined and whether it satisfies certain criteria. According to these criteria the Stability and Growth Pact clearly shows weak points. Moreover the proposals now discussed not only show the same weaknesses – they even create new ones and mainly work by reducing requirements. Against this background the IWH again proposes the implementation of a spending path that is superior to the Stability and Growth Path.