IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/imf/imfspn/2010-019.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Lifting Euro Area Growth: Priorities for Structural Reforms and Governance

Author

Listed:
  • Mr. Luc Everaert
  • Céline Allard

Abstract

To live up to its growth potential and secure its inclusive social model, the euro area must make better use of its available labor. In the aftermath of the crisis, boosting growth is essential to prevent unemployment from becoming a long-term problem and to facilitate the return to fiscal sustainability. Labor utilization in the euro area has been lagging considerably behind its best performing peers. While fewer hours worked may, to some extent, reflect a social choice, higher unemployment rates and lower participation rates, on the other hand, cannot easily be attributed to individual preferences. Here, policies and institutions matter more. And there is little excuse for relatively low labor productivity, a particular bane in southern Europe and an increasing challenge everywhere. Kick-starting growth requires a comprehensive approach to labor and service market reforms. Different circumstances call for different approaches across countries. Countries in southern Europe need to focus on regaining competitiveness, while some in the core should promote higher labor force participation or more open service sector markets. Improving access to the labor market should be high on the priority list everywhere—including through some harmonization of key features of the labor market, which will help deal with intra-euro area imbalances. Differences in labor taxation, unemployment benefit systems, and employment protection will need to be reduced. Improving regulation and reforming taxes and social benefits will be essential to make inroads. For the longer term, focus should be on innovation, education, and on continuing financial sector reforms.

Suggested Citation

  • Mr. Luc Everaert & Céline Allard, 2010. "Lifting Euro Area Growth: Priorities for Structural Reforms and Governance," IMF Staff Position Notes 2010/019, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfspn:2010/019
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/cat/longres.aspx?sk=24341
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:imf:imfspn:2010/019. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/imfffus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no bibliographic references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Akshay Modi (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/imfffus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.