Most of the Finns want to stay with euro ­– but what would happen if we didn’t?

Group 1: Anni Emilia Alentola & Joonas Heinonen

Majority of the both, Finnish economic experts and the citizens, does not consider giving up euro as a good idea.

Last July the leading Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat asked from 23 Finnish economic experts should Finland abandon euro and go back to our own currency. 18 out of 23 answered no, three answered yes and two answered cannot tell.

On January 2012 Elinkeinoelämän valtuuskunta EVA arranged a research which measured Finns attitude towards EU and euro. 54 percent of the 1,300 interviewees thought that staying in euro is a good choice. 27 percent thought that Finland should resign and the rest didn’t have an opinion.

But what if?

Swedish Bank Nordea, operating also in Finland, made a report called “What if eurozone collapses?” in Finnish last October. Nordea wanted – without commenting whether it is likely or not to collapse euro –answer their clients the huge amount of questions bank received about the euro crisis.

Report says that well-balanced national economy could use two currencies during the transition time.

Nordea report says that for the transition time Finnish currency could be bind to euro with an exchange rate of 1:1. At the beginning both currencies would be official currencies and euros would not be automatically transferred to new currency. Also bank deposits, debts and agreements would stay in euros until new agreements are made.

– In theory if Finland decided to leave the euro area, Finnish companies operating especially in the domestic markets could start paying salaries for example in the new currency, says Nordea analyst Suvi Kosonen.

The most important question still would be the development of the new currency.

– It is hugely dependent on the reason of the country exits the currency area, Kosonen adds.

In the Helsingin Sanomat interview last year economists pointed out how the possible resignation would affect citizens’ everyday life. For example rates might rise at the beginning, changes in exchange rates would increase expenses especially small companies and those who travel. Everyday business would turn out more difficult.

Text: Anni Emilia Alentola & Joonas Heinonen


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