Thierry Baudet, leader of the Forum For Democracy party, said the single currency had put the many differing nations of Europe into a straight jacket, exacting a heavy toll on the countries of southern Europe and a financial burden on the richer north.
Talking to the Express.co.uk, he said: “It’s not just that the north is paying. The South is also paying a terrible price. I’ve been in Greece. I’ve been in Spain, Portugal, Italy, and I’ve seen with my own eyes the incredible youth unemployment, the terrible situation, with the economy there.
“These are all consequences of what they call the European dream, which is to forge all these nations of our continent into a straight jacket. It’s just shocking to see the terrible price these ideologues are willing to pay, or better put, have us pay for it.”
The eurozone has frequently been in a state of shock since the 2008 financial crisis, which exposed problems with bringing a variety of different economies under the umbrella of one unifying currency.
As poorer southern economies faced mounting debt crises, their central banks found themselves unable to use monetary policy to ease the impact on their economies, forcing them to savagely cut public services.
This nearly forced Greece to crash out of the single currency on a number of occasions, sparking a major crisis for the bloc. One in three Greeks now live below the poverty line and unemployment is among the highest in the developed world, while Spain and Italy also suffer high levels of joblessness.
Mr Baudet confronted European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi in the Dutch parliament last Friday over the single currency’s failings.
During the debate, the insurgent politician forced a concession from the central banker that a political union was indeed the final step of the European project.
Mr Draghi said: “Last week or ten days ago, I was invited to do a speech at the Jean Monnet Foundation.
“On that occasion, I had the opportunity to read some of his writings. In his view, there was no doubt, that the sequence is single market, single currency, political union, and that is still the case.
Mr Baudet replied: “It was very instructive. Not just for me but for the rest of the audience, my fellow MPs, who continue to say: ‘ we are not on the path to federal union, nobody is talking about federal union, it is just sovereign states.
“He basically confirmed that monetary union cannot continue to exist in the long run without a political union, following up on it.
“He admitted [that] what Guy Verhofstadt is always saying and is always ridiculed for, is actually the policy of the EU.
“All that c**p they are always saying about the EU is not true, They are on the path to federal union, they are outspoken about it and you can be for or against it, but you can’t deny it.”
Mr Baudet’s party started as a political think tank and campaigns to extract the Netherlands from the European Union. It gained two seats in March’s general election and is on course to form part of the opposition in the House of Representatives.
He said the comments from Mr Draghi should be heard loud and clear amongst his political peers. “All those who are saying the Brits are over responding to it and the eurosceptics are making a caricature of the EU. They are wrong, we are right.”
Mr Draghi went on to add during the debate that he didn’t believe the time was right at present for a full political union.
He said: “When is it? We don’t know. Why? because you need the conditions, namely trust. Trust in the compliance of the rules, compliance in the governance of the eurozone and convergence. We can’t have union with divergent countries.”
Source : EXPRESS