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Europe

EU Commissioner Warns Against Hasty Euro Adoption

Internal market Commissioner Frits Bolkestein has cautioned Malta against a rushed adoption of the EU's single currency.

During a visit to Malta, as part of a tour of the 10 acceding countries, the Dutch Commissioner warned the new member states to take their time in joining the single currency. Bolkestein, who is not directly in charge of economic and monetary affairs, also reminded the EU new entrants that once the euro is adopted, they would not be able to take certain economic decisions on their own anymore. "I would say make haste slowly. As I will tell all the other candidates, take your time to see whether it really is in the interest of this country," Bolkestein said, according to the Times of Malta. "Remember once you adopt the euro, in principle it's forever, and the situation may change, the price of oil might change and industry is seriously affected. When things are uncertain, it's best not to jump, if you don't have to jump," he added. Malta has made a commitment to join the euro by 2010 and finance minister John Dalli said it would be beneficial for the country to join the euro once it brings the deficit in line by the target date of 2006. (EUObserver.com)

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