The single European currency will celebrate its 20th anniversary on Tuesday.
The euro was born on 1 January, 1999. The euro initially existed only as a virtual currency used in accounting and financial transactions. It became a physical reality for Europeans three years later, and its coins and notes are now used by over 340 million people in 19 European Union countries.
The currency wasn’t immediately loved, with many perceiving its arrival as an unwelcome price hike. In Germany, it was nicknamed the “teuro”, a pun on the German word for expensive.
But the ease of travelling and doing business across borders in the euro area without having to worry about foreign exchange fluctuations quickly won hearts and minds.
Today the euro is more popular than ever despite the rise of eurosceptic, populist movements in a slew of countries.
The euro is now the world’s number-two currency, though it remains some way off from challenging the dominance of the US dollar.
The euro reached a defining moment when the aftershocks of the 2008 financial crisis triggered a eurozone debt crisis that culminated in bailouts of several countries, pushing the currency union to breaking point and severely testing the club’s unity.
Experts say the turbulent time exposed the original flaws of the euro project, including the lack of fiscal solidarity through the pooling of debt, investments and therefore risks, or the lack of a lender of last resort.
“Europeans have benefited from the convenience, stability and security of the euro for 20 years. Although many citizens today have never known any other currency or have forgotten what life was like before, popular support for the common currency continues to grow,” the European Commission says on its website.
Adria Airways files for bankruptcy, all flights canceled
Slovenia’s airline Adria Airways has filed for bankruptcy and canceled all flights, it said in a statement on Monday, after financial problems forced it to ground most of its planes over the last week.
“Bankruptcy proceedings were initiated by the management of the company because of the company’s insolvency,” Adria, which is owned by German investment firm 4K Invest, said.
Adria is the latest in a long line of small European airlines to run into financial trouble amid industry overcapacity, cut-throat competition and high fuel prices.
Since last Tuesday Adria has canceled more than 400 flights affecting more than 15,000 passengers.
Slovenia’s Economy Minister Zdravko Pocivalsek said earlier on Monday the government was considering establishing a new airline company to improve the country’s international connections. Adria’s collapse was very damaging to Slovenia’s economy and tourism industry, the minister said.
Kristalina Georgieva named new IMF chief
Kristalina Georgieva of Bulgaria, a former World Bank CEO, has been formally selected as the new managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The IMF on Wednesday formally approved Georgieva to be its next leader. Georgieva is the second woman to lead the 189-membered institution.
“It is a huge responsibility to be at the helm of the IMF at a time when global economic growth continues to disappoint, trade tensions persist, and debt is at historically high levels,” she said. “This means also dealing with issues like inequalities, climate risks and rapid technological change.”
Bulgarian economist, who was previously chief executive of the World Bank, is to take up her position as managing director on October 1. She will succeed Christine Lagarde, who is leaving to become head of the European Central Bank (ECB) later this year.
Georgieva was the sole nominee for the job.
After graduating in 1976, Georgieva has built up a strong background in the World Bank and the European Commission, having held various senior roles in both institutions. She was commissioner in charge of the EU budget before she left to join the World Bank in January 2017.
Musk confirms Tesla to open stores in Croatia, Serbia next year
Tesla CEO Ilon Musk has stated that the company will open Tesla stores in Slovakia, Croatia, Serbia and most Eastern Europe states by early next year.
Firstly, Tesla is apparently going to open stores in Slovakia, Croatia, Serbia and most Eastern Europe states, after the company opened online orders for customers in Poland, Romania, Slovenia and Hungary.
In a post on Twitter, Tesla CEO says finally the company will do Nikola Tesla proud by having his cars in his countries of origin.
“Hoping to open in Slovakia, Croatia, Serbia & most of Eastern Europe early next year. Finally, we will do Nikola Tesla proud by having his cars in his countries of origin,” Musk tweeted.
Musk makes a reverential reference to Nikola Tesla, the engineering wizard from whose name the nomenclature of the carmaker has been derived.
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