European Commission endorses Latvia as eurozone member

June 6, 2013 at 1:41 PM

BRUSSELS, June 6 (UPI) -- The European Commission says it has endorsed Latvia's application to join the eurozone.

In a statement, the commission said Latvia had "achieved a high degree of sustainable economic convergence with the euro area."

"Latvia's experience shows that a country can successfully overcome macroeconomic imbalances, however severe, and emerge stronger," said Olli Rehn, commission vice-president responsible for Economic and Monetary Affairs.

"Following the deep recession of 2008-2009, Latvia took decisive policy action, supported by the European Union-International Monetary Fund financial assistance program," Rehn said.

"And this paid off: Latvia is forecast to be the fastest-growing economy in the EU this year," he said.

The commission's ECOFIN Council will make the final determination on Latvia's eligibility, which is scheduled for discussion in July.

First, Latvia's eligibility will be discussed by the European Parliament, by EU leaders at a June 27-28 summit meeting and by eurozone finance ministers, who will issue their own recommendations, as well, the commission said in a statement released Wednesday.

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