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Master the Strong Franc

Our dossier for SME features helpful news and information for internationally active Swiss SME, providing directions in an uncertain currency situation after the lifting of the Franc’s minimum exchange rate to the EuroThis is the name of the European Union (EU) single currency, although it has only been adopted by 16 of the 28 Member States so far. The United Kingdom, Denmark and Sweden, as well as Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, have retained their traditional national currency for the time being.

Apart from these 16 EU member states, the euro zone also includes non-EU countries that have adopted the euro, for example, Andorra, Montenegro, Kosovo, San Marino and Vatican City.

The euro has been in existence since 1st January 1999 as a notional currency; the exchange rates of the currencies in the participating states have been irrevocably fixed since this date, both in relation to each other and the euro. Euro notes and coins have been in circulation since 1st January 2002.

The euro applies within the framework of what is known as the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Only EU states meeting certain convergence criteria are able to join this monetary union. The criteria used include targets on permissible levels of inflation and interest rates, national debt, and a problem-free participation in the European Monetary System (EMS - the system designed to stabilise the exchange rates of the EU states’ currencies). Compliance with these criteria is checked on a regular basis as part of a wider mechanism for coordinating and monitoring national economic policies. The aim is to guarantee the highest possible level of price stability in the EU states covered by the EMU. The European Central Bank also has a duty to ensure that this aim is achieved. This body has been responsible for monetary policy instead of the national central banks since the euro was introduced.

Lithuania has been the 19th EU-country to introduce the EURO on January 1, 2015.
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