Irish candidate Donohoe new Eurogroup president
Pashal Donohoe is to be the new president of the Eurogroup. The 45-year-old from the conservative Fine Gael party has been Ireland's finance minister since 2017. The finance ministers of the euro countries elected Donohue on Thursday in a surprise victory against Spanish Minister of Economy Nadia Calviño, who was backed by Germany, France and Italy. What kind of financial policy does the new minister stand for?
A Eurogroup chief from a tax haven
A Eurogroup leader from Ireland is not the right choice for strengthening common European interests, El País complains:
“Ireland campaigns against any form of fiscal harmonisation. It is opposed to even a minimum tax on US multinational technology companies (the Google tax, which most of the EU supports), many of which are based in Ireland. And it has a minimal corporate tax rate. So it offers conditions close to those of a tax haven, which hardly provides for fair competition.”
Balance shifts in the conservatives' favour
At least Donohue is not a hardliner on budgetary discipline, La Repubblica comments:
“The 45-year-old politician from the Fine Gael party, which belongs to the centre-right EPP alliance, beat the Spaniard Nadia Calviño, who was backed by the government of socialist Pedro Sánchez, as well as by France, Germany, Italy and Portugal. This means that with the departure of the Portuguese socialist Mario Centeno the Eurogroup has changed colour and the balance has shifted in the conservatives' favour when it comes to top posts in Europe. As regards public finances, however, in keeping with Irish tradition Donohoe is no vassal to Nordic rigour. Certainly Italy would have preferred Calviño, with her pronounced anti-austerity sensibilities. ... But the ministers of the North deemed her too nervous and unwilling to make compromises.”