On 12 and 13 April 2013, the Minister of Finance, Professor Edward Scicluna, attended an informal EU Economic and Financial Affairs (ECOFIN) meeting in Dublin, Ireland.
He was accompanied by Professor Josef Bonnici, Governor Central Bank of Malta and the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for Finance, Mr. Alfred Camilleri.
Ministers of Finance discussed topics related to the future growth in Europe; the economic outlook and financial stability of the EU; the future shape of the Banking Union; tax fraud and tax evasion; and the European Commission’s Green Paper on long-term financing.
Ministers agreed that in order to get Europe’s economy growing again, policies should focus on credit, investment and growth. They noted that for growth and productivity to rise, the EU has to ensure the confidence of investors in the robustness of its financial sector by means of various EU financial regulations currently under negotiation. In this context, a significant part of the discussion focused on the importance of the ongoing establishment of a Banking Union as a way to boost growth as this will create a unified way for the EU to supervise and ensure the resilience of its financial institutions, thus boosting market confidence.
On the sidelines of the informal ECOFIN meeting, Eurozone Finance Ministers held a customary Eurogroup meeting. Eurozone Finance Ministers finalised a political agreement on the draft Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the economic adjustment programme for Cyprus.
The Eurogroup and ECOFIN Ministers also discussed the state of play of the adjustment programmes in Ireland and in Portugal. Both programmes are broadly on track and an agreement was reached to extend the maturities of the loans to Ireland and Portugal.
– Tuesday, 16th April, 2013