An article by Marijus Bernatavičius, currently an advisor to the Executive Director of the IMF, will be presented and discussed at an international seminar. “Independence of the ECB and the ECJ during the Sovereign Debt Crisis: From Active Leadership to Rubber-Stamping?” was published in the prestigious academic journal, the Journal of Common Market Studies. The seminar will be attended by representatives of the IMF, the Bank of Lithuania, the ECB, the European Commission, the President’s Office of the Republic of Lithuania, the Republic of Lithuania Ministry of Economy and Innovation and the Ministry of Finance.
The article deals with key decisions taken by the ECB and the European Court of Justice (ECJ) during the euro area debt crisis. The results of the study confirm that the decisions of both institutions were largely influenced by the situation in the financial markets and by the model chosen by the European Council for resolving the debt crisis: rescuing euro area countries in exchange for fiscal consolidation and structural reforms. The article proposes a synthetic model to explain more clearly how and what compromises the heads of the ECB and the ECJ had to make in dealing with the challenges of the debt crisis. The article deals with four key moments of the debt crisis: ECJ decisions on the ECB’s OMT programme and the legality of the ESM, as well as the ECB decisions to launch the OMT programme and extend the provision of liquidity to Greek banks in 2015 (this allowed Greece to remain a member of the euro area).