Fictitious ‘independence’ of ECB needs to be replaced by democratic control
The European Central Bank’s decision to increase interest rates by 0.25% will have devastating consequences for mortgage holders across Ireland. For many, this extra €500 a year or more will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and can leave them facing eviction.
Jean-Claude Trichet’s announcment. is also a further nail in the coffin of economies like Greece, Ireland and Portugal which are in need of low interest rates to assist in stimulating economic growth. It also has the potential to ignite the smouldering massive Spanish housing crisis, which in turn can result in Spain completing the quartet of so-called PIGS countries hurling towards default.
The ECB’s ‘independence’ is something that is much trumpeted by right-wing economists. This latest rate increase underlines the fact that this independence is purely fictitious and ECB policy is being determined by the interests of the capitalist class in the so-called ‘core’ Euro countries, like Germany. The trade union movement and Left across Europe must campaign to bring the ECB under democratic control with monetary policy being implemented in the interests of working people across Europe.