Jean-Pierre Rosso: The State of the European Union
Mr. Rosso has been Chairman of World Economic Forum USA Inc. since April 2006. Mr. Rosso served as Chairman of CNH Global N.V. from November 1999 until his retirement in May 2004; was Chief Executive Officer of CNH Global N.V. from November 1999 to November 2000; and Chief Executive Officer of Case Corporation from April 1994 to November 1999 and Chairman from March 1996 to November 1996. He is also a director of ADC Telecommunications, Inc., Bombardier Inc., and Eurazeo.
Question: Why is the Euro so strong?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: Euro is not strong, the dollars is extremely weak and the dollar is extremely weak I mean absolutely critically wounded for the reasons we know but largely because of all the imbalances over the past few years, it is not just as, momentary crisis here, it is the fact that we have balanced budget deficit we have trade balance deficits of the large, over the large magnitory and this has weakened the dollar over all. So the US benefited from this as all the currencies and when you look in Indian dollars apparently with the US dollar and Swiss Frank as well so the Yen is very strong, so I think its what we have is the weakness of the dollar.
Question: Can the strength of the dollar be restored?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: Personally I do, I think that this shall pass, I think the such a strong economy of this homogeneous domestic market of 260 sub million people great innovation great technology, great companies that economy is still by far the number one in the world and that is what, what supports so the strong currencies so and we need a strong currency, I mean it is a, I am not happy about the current situation, I think in fact that the weak dollar is potentially a clinically should.
Question: What is the state of the European markets?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: Europe moves at its own pace and but they move, I mean they move at a slow pace by as per US standards but they move I mean they have accomplished unbelievable things in the last 50 years given were they are coming from and they keep progressing, so there are lot of people in this country or in the world, but in this country in particular think [inaudible] would never work out, that the Germans would never abandoned the Dutch market and all this has been accomplished, so the market is improving I mean there is still huge issues in Europe in some of the larger countries regarding labor flexibility and bureaucracies and things of this sort, in other words they weights of the past are still pulling, hurting the growth of Europe. So if Europe would free itself from those issues, from those burdens it is a very it is highly educated part of the world with a smart people who can accomplish a lot, but to being held down by more than, so many countries by there system.
Question: Where will the growth occur in Europe?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: Well, growth will come from a strong focus on first of all innovation technology, global reach there are lot there are a lot of globe European based global companies, but they could be more European companies involved globally. This is changing rapidly by the way they are involved, but there is lot of growth that can come from that, but to me the major reason the major thing to do to get more growth in Europe is to liberalize some of the labor markets to do the reforms that are necessary to free their system and unleash the creative power and the initiative and the investment in Europe, right now, it is easy to consider you should invest in, somewhere else, but and for all the reasons that we know.
Question: Is immigration a challenge or an opportunity for Europe?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: It is not an easy issue to deal with, up to a point obviously there is two major ways to look at this, you know it is, it is assimilation or it is accepting into European largely Christian environment different cultures and accepting them as they are and this is a tough issue, some countries have opted for one approach some countries have opted for another approach with mixed results. So it is not an easier, it is not an easy in easier issue deal with, the only the major impediment to dealing with this is back to the lack of growth. If you do not have employment growth, then immigration becomes a huge irritant because it is easy for some people to say that those immigrants are taking the jobs of the nationals, if there is a growth for every one then the prom goes away. So growths is critical, so it is a sort of chicken and the egg, you will need the immigration because we need the population growth but we need to grow the economic growth in order to support and give a job to every one, but this is the path way on I mean this is the path Europe is on and again its moving slowly but it is moving.
Question: Will France succeed in fully integrating its growing Muslim population?
Jean-Pierre Rosso: France is dealing with this they have build mosques and I think that the countries is tolerant of all this and it all, I am sorry to repeat my self but the only people who have been criticizing, opposing this and being Anti immigration may be there is a tone of racism in there but anti immigration is because of low employment, high un employment because if you don’t have high un employment if you have full employment that problem goes away immediately.
Date Recorded: 03/19/2008
Europe has a history of overcoming obstacles.