This book tells the inside story of those who played key roles in setting up the organisations and combatting the crisis. In exclusive interviews, global financial leaders and ESM insiders provide a rich stock of perspectives and anecdotes that bring to life the urgency of the crisis as well as the innovative solutions found to resolve it. The European Stability Mechanism and its temporary predecessor the EFSF provided billions of euros in loans to five hard-hit euro area countries during the European financial and sovereign debt crisis of the early 2000s, helping to safeguard the stability of those countries and the euro area as a whole. Initially, the crisis-torn euro area was ill-equipped institutionally, but the rapid establishment of the firewalls, the assistance programmes, deep‑seated country reforms, the strengthening of European institutions, and extraordinary European Central Bank measures shielded Europe from a euro area break-up. With the EFSF/ESM set-up, its managers aspired to create a new, more entrepreneurial international financial institution, one that is agile enough to respond quickly to new challenges, while still ensuring the strict governance befitting an organisation pursuing a public mission. The euro area has emerged from near disaster in more robust shape. As Europe strives to further strengthen its architecture in preparation for any possible future crises, it is important to reflect upon how the euro area reinvigorated its fortunes and draw the relevant lessons for future crisis management in Europe and beyond.
PDF file, 424 pages