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Europe

Greece, Hungary Under Euro Rule Scrutiny

The European Commission is set to pursue disciplinary proceedings against Hungary and Greece for breaking rules underpinning the euro, according to media reports.

The European Commission is expected to rule Wednesday that Hungary and Greece have not taken sufficient measures to rein in their ballooning budget deficits, which clearly surpass the three percent limit set by the EU's Stability and Growth Pact. However, Brussels is expected to suspend disciplinary procedures against Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Cyprus and Malta. In November it emerged that Greece's deficit has been over the EU's limit since 1997. It is expected to reach six percent this year, but Athens has pledged to scrape below the ceiling again in 2005. The next stage of the procedure - if Greece fails in its commitments - is to threaten huge fines, which could run into billions of euro. The final decision on what to do with Greece and Hungary will be taken by EU finance ministers. (EUobserver.com)

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