One of the triumphs of the Spanish government towards the end of the 1990s was joining European monetary union as a founder member. Under the conservative-led government, the country succeeded in meeting all of the Maastricht Treaty convergence criteria well ahead of schedule, and was launched on the path of monetary integration with the promise of price stability and economic growth in return for its commitment to fiscal rectitude. It was a remarkable achievement, even for a country such as Spain which was an enthusiastic participant in the European integration process since its initial entry to the EC. The enthusiasm for monetary union had been just as fervent, but the seemingly intractable economic problems gave the impression that eligibility was beyond even the careful management of the Bank of Spain.
KeywordsExchange Rate Interest Rate Monetary Policy Central Bank European Central Bank
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