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Strauss-Kahn says EU should reach new level of coordination to overcome crisis

July 31, 2013, 13:20 UTC+3

"Europe feels a stronger impact of the crisis because of its inability to conduct a common policy"

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PARIS/ ST. PETERSBURG, July 31 (Itar-Tass) - EU should reach a new level of coordination if it wants to overcome the crisis successfully, international economics expert Dominique Strauss-Kahn said Wednesday in an interview with Itar-Tass and the Rossiya-24 TV channel.

If the European nations fail to attain a new level of coordination, the Old Continent will lose its leading role in the international arena in the next ten or so years.

Along with it, Strauss-Kahn, who is a former Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, voiced the apprehensions that the Europeans will be unable to regain dynamic economic growth within the next five or so years.

“Europe feels a stronger impact of the crisis /compared with other parts of the world - Itar-Tass/ because of its inability to conduct a common policy,” he said. “The feebleness of Europe’s construction, which many experts started pointing out quite some time ago, was especially noticeable in a situation of relative calm but it made itself manifest immediately in the period of turbulences.”

“The European leaders are much more concerned with their own re-election and with their national problems,” Strauss-Kahn said. “I am afraid they have a rather narrow vision of globalization and that’s why they failed to brace themselves for rebuffing the crisis.”

He believes that the process of globalization makes economic competition more acute.

“From my angle of view, globalization implies a contention, a war of the economies, economic relations between which have existed - albeit on a different scale - have existed until this very day, and development was piggybacked by the domestic market,” Strauss-Kahn said.

“However, globalization has transformed all countries into contenders or even warring sides,” he said.

Given the conditions of nowadays, ‘the Europeans are unable to do the things that large powers can afford.’

“No doubt, the U.S. can prepare for it but it will proceed from its own interests, and China will also act in its own interests, and Russia, too,” Strauss-Kahn said. “As for the EU, it can’t do this due to insufficient coordination among the member-states and unless a rise occurs in the Old Continent, Europe will have no weight in the international arena within twenty or so years.”

He pointed out a definite dichotomy of the situation saying that Europe will unlikely regain steady growth within the next few years.

“Indicators may climb a little or go down alongside with small fluctuations but if one looks at it from the structural angle, a strong economic growth of no less than 3% isn’t expected in Europe for many years to come,” Strauss-Kahn said. “Consequently, the next few years will see more huge difficulties and unemployment.”

He warned in this connection that social instability always contains covert threats to democracy.

“It’s obvious now that the deterioration of social conditions leads up to a destruction of democracy and heightens the risks of extremism - something that can be seen in many European countries already today,” Strauss-Kahn said.

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