The International Law and Politics of the Financial and Monetary System
Chapter 18: Case study: the Greek debt crisis (2009–2018)
This chapter examines the Greek debt crisis (2009–2018) as an illustration of the Trilemma: small open market economies cannot pursue an independent economic policy if they have tethered their currency to a fixed exchange rate. Greece is an open market economy that has fixed its exchange rate through the euro. As a result, it could not pursue an independent economic policy when it was faced with one of the worst crises in its history. The sacrifice of national economic autonomy for the preservation of the euro tested the public’s faith in the effectiveness of domestic democratic institutions. Citizens questioned the utility of a national democratic state that could not steer its own economic fate.
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