The writer is visiting professor in practice at the London School of Economics and a former director-general of the Italian Treasury

Is Europe doing too little, too late to support its post-pandemic economic recovery? The question hung in the air this week even after the EU conducted its most ambitious transaction on world financial markets. For the future, the essential point is that Europe’s fiscal, economic and monetary support need not be bigger, but it must be smarter.

Some respected policymakers, such as Wolfgang Schäuble, the former German finance minister, are in favour of the EU’s debt-fuelled stimulus programmes but nevertheless urge a swift return to fiscal and monetary discipline. Others warn about the risks of withdrawing support too soon and reverting to an inappropriate policy mix. In my view, the starting point is to frame the debate in a proper way.

The 27-nation EU and the 19-nation eurozone…

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