Friday, February 8, 2013

Hollande: Forex policy must be evaluated over time

BRUSSELS--French President Francois Hollande said Friday that a foreign exchange policy for the euro must be set up and evaluated over time, taking into account the fact that the strength of the currency impacts the economies of euro-zone countries in different ways.

"What count aren't the daily, the weekly change in the euro's value compared to other currencies," Mr. Hollande told a press conference after a meeting of European Union leaders in Brussels. "What counts is to have an exchange target that is realistic over time."

The French President said that the euro group, a monthly meeting of finance ministers from countries in the euro zone, should dictate the strategy that the euro zone should adopt while dealing with other currency zones.

Mr. Hollande said that the increase in the value of the euro hits euro-zone economies in different ways.

"Not all the European economies suffer the same consequences: there are countries that can export even with an expensive currency, and others that don't have this capacity, due to their industrial specialization," Mr. Hollande said.

He denied that the recent appreciation in the common currency is damping growth in France, the euro zone's second-largest economy.

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