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Central Europe; a safe harbour in the financial storm

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euro.jpgIf being in the European Union were ever controversial in central Europe, the current financial turmoil may be delivering the ultimate proof that it was worth it.

While markets plunged in Russia and Turkey, the emerging markets of central Europe saw only muted reaction (some of their currencies are actually up on the year) largely because their EU status guarantees them access to easy money from the bloc.

“Convergence” — a gradual process of approaching the euro zone — provides priceless insurance, a point Austrian central bank head Ewald Novotny made this week.

“I think that, with some finessing, it (relatively good performance of central Europe) could be linked with the stability and investor confidence in the region due to their EU
membership and obligation to join the euro,” he said in the Slovak capital Bratislava.

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