What is the Eurogroup?

With the fate of Greece dependant on Eurogroup deliberations, many are wondering what this body is and what is its place in EU decision making.

The Eurogroup was created by a European Council decision in 1997 as an informal forum for close policy dialogue among the most relevant decision-makers in the euro area. It was not assigned any legislative decision-making competences. Its members include the finance ministers of the countries having adopted the euro as their currency, the commissioner for economic and financial affairs and the president of the ECB. Puetter explains that while the Eurogroup predates the Lisbon Treaty, Lisbon formally recognised the role of the group. The Treaty expands the scope of decisions on which the euro area countries can decide amongst themselves. This formalises the practice of de facto domination of ECOFIN through the Eurogroup. The Eurogroup is still characterised by informal working methods comprising of discussions among finance ministers, the Commission and in particular with the ECB.

See below for an indicative bibliography:

Secchi, C. (2009) (Istituto per gli studi di politica internazionale)
Liberalism in Crisis?: European Economic Governance in the Age of Turbulence, EE   

Begg, I. (2008), ‘Economic governance in an enlarged euro area’, European Economy – Economic Papers,  (311)

Hodson, D. (2011), Governing the euro area in good times and bad (Oxford: Oxford University Press).

Puetter, U. (2006), The Eurogroup: how a secretive circle of finance ministers shape European economic governance (Manchester: Manchester University Press).

— (2012), ‘Europe’s deliberative intergovernmentalism – the role of the Council and European Council in EU economic governance’, Journal of European Public Policy, 19 (2)



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