The Legal Architecture of the Economic Responses to COVID-19: EMU beyond the Pandemic

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Series Details Volume 60, Number 1, Pages 186-203
Publication Date January 2022
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This article analyses from a law and policy perspectives the measures adopted by the European Union (EU) to address the devastating economic effects of COVID-19, assessing their implications for Europe's economic and monetary union (EMU).

The article first sets the background by exploring the main features of EMU before COVID-19. Subsequently, it examines the multiplicity of policies deployed by the EU institutions to contain the socio-economic damages of the pandemic – including, most crucially, the EU recovery fund "Next Generation EU" – and underlines their transformative effect on the EU architecture of economic governance. As the article argues, the responses to COVID-19 have produced a significant rebalancing of EMU, bridging the asymmetry between EU monetary and economic policy. Finally, the article considers whether the COVID-19-related responses are likely to be only temporary, or rather a new normal for EMU, and sheds light on further constitutional adaptations which are needed to sustain this unprecedented transfer of fiscal power to the EU level.

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This article is of a Special Issue of the JCMS, titled Macroeconomic Policy Coordination and Domestic Politics: Policy Coordination in the EU from the European Semester to the COVID-19 Crisis.

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