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European Central Bank says Britain is welcome to join the Euro!!


milkeybar kid

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I over heard a very peculiar conversation in our local (Ribble Valley) Chinese between 2  farmers and went along the lines of that the current exchange rate was crippling them( I assatained they were dairy farmers) and we should get out of Europe all together never mind join the Euro, I just did not understand this firstlty does they current exchange rate really effect dairy farmers and surely being in the EU they would have had a fair slice of handouts, payments for set asside etc etc or am I just missing the point. So I think the average person, if it was would put to the vote would vote against.
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Before I came to live in France I was very much against the UK joining the Euro. My prime reason I guess was that I saw it eroding away UK sovereignty, the final nail in the coffin of UK independence from Europe. I also didn't see any real point.

Living in France has made me feel more European and has also given me the opportunity to see things from another angle. I guess I am lucky in as much as I get to meet people from all over Europe and have the chance to talk to them about all sorts of things including the UK, the Euro (should the UK be in it) and European politics in general. Gradually my perspective has changed I now feel European as opposed to just English.

For ordinary people who travel in Europe and for small UK business that trade in Europe (and there is a lot of them) moving to the Euro would be a good thing. If you don't do either of these then I guess your attitude would be why bother. As an individual when asked why the UK is not in the Euro I often tell people that the UK general public are not interested because they believe that during the transfer prices will get rounded up in calculations and that many have experienced this in the past when we decimalised sterling. So we know whats going to happen, things will get more expensive. Interestingly enough the people form the EU that I have spoken too said that happened when their country changed over. I seem to remember that one or two countries (Greece comes to mind and I think possibly Italy but I can't remember) considered pulling out after a year or two just because of that reason.

When I had money in the UK it cost me about £25 to transfer money over to France via my bank. When I deal within Euroland it costs me 5 Euros. I, or rather my guests, are also susceptible to exchange rates. In 2008 my guests booked their holidays when the Euro was 1.4X but when the get here now its 1.1X, thats a big difference. Although I have bookings for 2009 from the UK already they are not so many as this time last year. I think this is not just due to the financial situation in the UK but the exchange rate as well. Lucky for me I advertise a lot in Europe.

I tried to google what the official exchange rate would have been if we joined the Euro as I thought this was set some time back but after 20 minutes gave up. If anyone is interested I used "UK official exchange rate for joining the Euro" which came up with some really interesting stuff although no actual rate. What was interesting was how the changeover will take place and the fact that the UK was committed to joining the Euro at sometime in the future and how it would be 'rolled out'. Its interesting to see old arguments going back to 2001 and even 1997 when the UK had a strong economy as to why we shouldn't join, as time as passed their comments have proved to be wrong, in fact using their own reasons against them perhaps they are sorry the UK didn't join.

Personally I think yes the UK should join but really they should have joined a couple of years ago not just because we would have got a better rate of exchange but because Europe is more financially stable than the US with who we seem to have thrown in our lot.

One further thing, farmers, as it was mentioned. All these farmers subsidies are quite complex but in general they are the same across Europe. People look at the bottom line like how much does each country get. Those countries that get more, and France is a good example, give the appearance of the farmers being better off. One reason the French subsidy is so big goes back to the hereditary laws in France. A farmer dies, he has 4 children, the farm gets divided in to 4 and so forth. Consequently there are a lot of small farms around, I mean a real lot. I can't remember the exact amount although I believe its 30,000 Euros per farm is considered the minimum wage for the farmer and his family. With such small farms it's impossible to earn this amount therefore they receive a subsidy to get them to the 30k. Because there are so many small farms when all this is added up it comes to a very big bill. In the UK we have very big farms and less farmers so the annual total amount is not so large. I have seen more poor farmers in France than I have in the UK.

As a general statement perhaps the English farmers should take a leave out of the French farmers book and stop being walked over by the supermarkets and government. Perhaps they should take some more direct action like demanding a rise in the price they are payed for milk and if they don't get it pour it down the drain till they do. They need to get the same respect as the French farmers and they only way is to let people know not to mess with them.

Anyway the UK joining the Euro is quite an emotional subject for many and I doubt you will get total agreement either way but it sure will be interesting. I am particularly interested in the NO's and in particular their reasons, especially now.

 

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Quillan

You mentioned 'inflation after decimalisation'. This was in no small part due to the decision to adopt a £/cent system for the 'new' currency, meaning that the new penny was 2.4 times the value of the old penny, and as a result the whole basket of goods priced at less than 10d drifted rapidly up to be priced at the same number of p, followed by a sympathetic rise in the price of higher value goods. If a 10/-/cent system had been adopted, then the difference in value between old and new basic units (+20% against +140%) would have had a much smaller impact. The £/cent system was chosen because of a sentimental preference for the pound sterling. If the UK enters the Euro system when the euro is valued at parity or less with the pound, then one would not expect to see significant inflation of prices. The choices before the Halsbury Committee were £/cent, 10/-/cent, and £/mil.

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All my old mum knew (who was not particularly interested in the Halsbury Committee and to be frank probably had never heard of it) was that when she worked out the price of a pound of spuds back in to old money it was more than she paid before decimalisation and thats how ordinary people worked. What the retailers said was that they had simply rounded up the new price after conversion. Reality and what is perceived as reality are two different things which is why my mum didn't want the Euro, "look what happened when we decimalised" she would say "just another excuse to rip us off again"  and there are a lot of people out there that remember and think the same way, rightly or wrongly.

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[quote user="woody234"]when its 1 pound = 1 euro we can join but thats not going to be untill about 2014[/quote]

 Hi,

   I remember when £ entry was being discussed back in the 90s that the ECB said it would not accept the £ at less than 1.40 €/£ because a cheaper £ would give the UK too much commercial advantage, so I very much doubt they would accept it at todays rates.

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[quote user="parsnips"]

 Hi,
   I remember when £ entry was being discussed back in the 90s that the ECB said it would not accept the £ at less than 1.40 €/£ because a cheaper £ would give the UK too much commercial advantage, so I very much doubt they would accept it at todays rates.
[/quote]

But the item posted by th OP states

ECB: Britain Welcome To Join Euro

????

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[quote user="krusty"]

[quote user="parsnips"]

 Hi,

     Yes it says welcome, but if we did apply, the rate of exchange, which would be fixed forever, would obviously be negotiated in favour of the existing members, ie; negotiated upwards--good for us but bad for a lot of british businesses. Thats why I don't see it happening soon.

   I remember when £ entry was being discussed back in the 90s that the ECB said it would not accept the £ at less than 1.40 €/£ because a cheaper £ would give the UK too much commercial advantage, so I very much doubt they would accept it at todays rates.

[/quote]

But the item posted by th OP states

ECB: Britain Welcome To Join Euro

????

[/quote]
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