• Susanne Trischler
4. term, European Studies, Master (Master Programme)
Local currencies, currencies used in a NUTS3 area, have been an important part of the European economy since the rise of money economy. They have contributed to the regional patterns of trade in general and to the development and stabilization of regions hit by financial crisis, in particular. The demands of rulers to secure their empires have led to a steady rejection and decline of local currencies. Similarly, as part of the European Monetary Union (EMU), the national currencies of the member states were replaced by the Euro as the common currency. With the introduction of the Euro, the members of the eurozone have lost the ability to utilize monetary and fiscal measure to their advantage. This loss in sovereignty is especially detrimental for the nation states in times of crisis, because the traditional measures turned to when facing state insolvency are no longer an option. The recent financial crisis has revealed what has been one main issue from the beginning of the EMU: most of the member states are not compatible in their economic cycles and patterns. The differences in economic standards and development have been targeted by EU regional policy since the 1970s. The EU Structural Funds were created to support regional programs targeted at the economic development of the specific regions. The EU sets general rules for the use of these funds and the member states, together with their regional authorities and local stakeholders, develop the specific rules for the funds and chose the programs eligible for funding. In the framework of EU regional policy, this paper looks at complementary currencies and in particular at regional complementary currencies (RCCs), that is currencies used parallel to the official currency in a particular region with a use of a geographic dimension of a NUTS3 or in few cases a NUTS2 region. RCCs, the successor of local currencies in time of advanced monetary aggregation, have proven to have the capacity of being an effective tool for regional economic development. This paper asks if and how RCCs qualify as regional economic development programs eligible for funding under the EU Structural Funds.
Publication date2 Jun 2014
Number of pages58
ID: 198416523