Maastricht's Fiscal Rules at Ten: An Assessment

26 Pages Posted: 28 Apr 2003

See all articles by Marco Buti

Marco Buti

European Commission, DG II

Gabriele Giudice

European Commission


The Maastricht Treaty is ten years old. Its fiscal rules played a key role in kickstarting and sustaining the budgetary retrenchment efforts in European Union countries in the run-up to economic and monetary union (EMU). The experience of the Maastricht-induced fiscal consolidation shows that the political economy dimension of the rules is key to their success. It remains to be seen whether the stability and growth pact - which aims to lock EMU members into a permanent fiscal discipline commitment while allowing for flexibility to cushion cyclical fluctuations - will work. In order to succeed in this undertaking, EU governments and institutions have to tackle a number of open issues in the implementation of the pact while recreating the political drive which made Maastricht a success.

Suggested Citation

Buti, Marco and Giudice, Gabriele, Maastricht's Fiscal Rules at Ten: An Assessment. Available at SSRN:

Marco Buti (Contact Author)

European Commission, DG II ( email )

Rue de la Loi 200
Brussels, B-1049
+32 2 296 2246 (Phone)
+32 2 299 3505 (Fax)

Gabriele Giudice

European Commission ( email )

Rue de la Loi 200
Brussels, B-1049
(32 2) 296 3654 (Phone)
(32 2) 299 3505 (Fax)

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