Interview with Philippe Debuck, Director-General, Businesseurope : "The Business Community Needs Towork with Banks"

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Ahead of the European Council (18- 19 October),BusinessEurope, the European employers' federation, has called on member states to pledgeto take concrete measures towards further political and economic integration in a letteraddressed to the 27 member states as well as to the Presidents of the European Council andthe European Commission, respectively Herman Van Rompuy and Jose Manuel Barroso1.Business-Europe particularly stressed the need to establish an integrated financialframework in order for the financial sector to regain the credibility and confidence,which are the foundations for the development of enterprises, BusinessEurope'sDirector-General Philippe de Buck told Europoliticssocial.

What do you expect from the 18-19 OctoberEuropean Council?

Our main message is that there is an urgency toprogress between now and the end of the year. Why? Firstly, the business community hasalways committed itself to safeguard the euro and also the financial sector, which is thebasis of its development. Secondly, we are turning into a flat growth on average for 2012,which means that some countries will enter a recession. But the EU needs 2.5% economicgrowth a year on average to sustain its economic and social system and to maintain itsstandard of living. Therefore, there is a need to take measures to boost growth. Thirdly,efforts have been made to cut budget deficits and we hope that countries' debts willdecrease because this is also really important for growth. We have been struggling withthese issues and it is time to finalise the ongoing process.

In itsletter to the EU Council, BusinessEurope highlights the need to establish an integratedfinancial framework. Could you elaborate on this?

The loop betweenbank financing and governments has to be broken. We need a mechanism that disconnects thefinancial sector from sovereign bond risks and restores the single market for financialservices. We need eurozone measures in the banking sector that create a single supervisionauthority. And these should allow the non-eurozone countries to be included. We also needa coordinated resolution mechanism and guaranteed deposits. The objective is to makethings more reliable and stronger.

Why exactly do businesses needthese measures?

One month after the fall of Lehman brothers, inSeptember 2008, we saw a complete collapse of the industry sector. That is one veryconcrete example on the global stage. Another example is the problem with Bankia in Spainthat has created a huge bottleneck in the economy. …