Putin: Russia will Join the Euro One Day
By Louise Armitstead
Russia and Germany should dramatically increase their economic co-operation. Thatâ€™s the message from Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to some of Germanyâ€™s top industrialists at a business forum in Berlin.
â€œThe Telegraphâ€ – -Vladimir Putin said it is â€œquite possibleâ€ that Russia will one day join the eurozone and create a currency that would eclipse the US dollar as the global reserve standard.
Speaking at a conference in Germany the Russian prime minister, who is in the country for talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel, said he was convinced the euro would stabilise and strengthen despite the current sovereign debt crisis.
He said: â€œYes, there are problems. But the economic policy of the European Central Bank and of the governments of leading European economies … convinces me that the stability of the euro will be ensured.â€
He added: â€œWe know there are problems in Portugal, Greece, Ireland and the euro is wobbling a bit. On the whole it is a solid, good currency and it should take its place, its role as a reserve currency.â€
Asked about Russiaâ€™s role in the eurozone in the future, Mr Putin said: â€œCan it be supposed that one day Russia will be in some joint currency zone with Europe? Yes, quite possible.â€
Speaking at the same event, Josef Ackermann, chief executive of Deutsche Bank, echoed Mr Putin and said he could imagine Russia joining a common European currency.
Mr. Putin said that for the past decade there has been a reliance on the dollar that needs to be rebalanced as it makes the world economy vulnerable. â€œWe should move away from the excessive monopoly of the dollar as the only global reserve currency,â€ he said.
But the Russian prime minister was critical of European laws intended to improve transparency in energy supply and distribution. He claimed the â€œThird Energy Packageâ€, aimed at liberalizing the market, will hinder investment and amounts to uncivilized â€œrobberyâ€. Moscow claims that the measures devalue the European assets of Gazprom, the state-controlled gas giant.
Mr. Putin said: â€œWe often hear from our partners in Europe and North America: â€˜If you want to be members of a global family of civilized nations, you should behave in a civilized way.â€™ What is this then? Have our colleagues forgotten the basic principles?â€