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Estonia: Adopting the euro benefited the economyBaltic countries
15 Jul 2013 Jana Liptáková Other
ESTONIA’S joining the eurozone boosted the comfort and security level of the country’s EU trading partners and put an end to speculation about possible devaluation of the national currency, the kroon, says Kalvi Noormägi, the economy officer from the Embassy of Estonia to Slovakia based in Vienna.
The Slovak Spectator spoke to Noormägi about economic links between Slovakia and Estonia as well as certain aspects of his country’s entry to the eurozone.
The Slovak Spectator (TSS): Estonia adopted the European single currency in 2011. How did adoption of the euro benefit your country?
Before joining the eurozone, our economy shrank by almost a fifth in 2008 and 2009, after its real-estate bubble burst and the global financial crisis sucked all credit out of the economy. In response, the government cut public sector wages 10 percent, raised taxes, took bigger-than-planned dividends from state-owned companies and froze pension contributions to meet budget deficit requirements for euro entry.
By the end of 2011 public debt was 5.8 percent of gross domestic product, the lowest rate in the EU, and the government budget was actually in a surplus. Estonia’s economy in 2011 grew an estimated 7.9 percent from the previous year: adopting the euro boosted the comfort and security level of its EU trading partners, who imported more from Estonia as a result.
TSS: Could you assess the current state of economic cooperation and trade between your country and Slovakia?
TSS: How do you perceive Slovakia as a destination of investment from your country?
TSS: Are there any organisations to support business links between the central European and Baltic regions, or more specifically, Slovakia and Estonia?
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