Why Do Some EU Countries Still Use National Currencies and Not Euro?
© Sputnik / Anton DenisovEuro Money
© Sputnik / Anton Denisov/
Two decades since joining the EU, the Czech Republic still uses its national currency, the koruna, rather than the euro. The government, however, has announced that it is ready to discuss details about the possibility of the country shifting to the EU’s monetary unit.
The Czech government plans to prepare assessments of legislative issues to enable the country to enter the pre-euro exchange rate mechanism, known as ERM-2, by October 2024, Prime Minister Petr Fiala has tweeted.
The remarks came as four of the five ruling parties remain in favor of joining the Eurozone, while Fiala’s Civic Democrats, the dominant coalition member, opposes the move. The party demands that the government won’t take any steps toward the switch during its term that expires in 2025.
The Czech Republic committed to introducing the single currency when it joined the EU in 2004, but according to a recent survey, 63% of the population are against the move.
EU Countries That Don't Use Euro
Apart from the Czech Republic, six other EU members continue to use their national currencies rather than the euro:
Bulgaria. Finance Minister Rossitsa Velkova said last year that the country had scrapped its target to adopt the euro in January 2024 as it failed to meet the so-called Maastricht euro entry criteria on inflation and had not made some necessary legal changes;
Denmark. In 2000, the Danish government held a referendum on introducing the euro, which saw 53.2% of voters say “no” to the initiative, with 46.8% approving the move;
Hungary. The country originally planned to adopt the euro as its official currency before the end of 2009, but the target date was finally abandoned because of an excessively high budget deficit, inflation, and public debt, something that is out of line with the Maastricht criteria;
Poland. The country does not meet the Maastricht criteria related to exchange rate stability and long-term interest rates. Also, Polish law is not completely compatible with EU treaties;
Romania. The European Commission earlier concluded that the country’s legislation is not fully compatible with eurozone rules and that the nation is in breach of all criteria needed for adopting the euro. Romania has problems with inflation, stability of public finances, the exchange rate criterion, and the convergence of long-term interest rates;
Sweden. Back in September 2003, 55.9% voted against membership of the Eurozone in a referendum.
Inflation on Increase
Annual inflation in 20 Eurozone countries, meanwhile, increased to 2.9% in December, up from 2.4% in November, the European Statistical Office (Eurostat) said in a statement last month.
28 October 2023, 12:13 GMT
In December, food, alcohol and tobacco were the biggest contributors to eurozone inflation, followed by services, non-energy industrial goods and energy.
The highest annual inflation rate was recorded in Slovakia with 6.6%, while the lowest rates were reported in Belgium and Italy with 0.5% each, according to the statement.