Margaret Thatcher said no to Euro as 'one currency', Irish archives reveal

WION Web Team
London, United Kingdom Published: Dec 27, 2020, 05:48 PM(IST)

British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher aka 'Iron lady' of Britain Photograph:( Reuters )

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'In talking of a single currency, [Jacques] Delors must have had a rush of blood to the head,' Margaret Thatcher said

Britain's 'Iron lady' Margaret Thatcher believed the European Commission's plan for a single currency in the European Union was a "rush of blood to the head".

The thoughts of Thatcher were revealed after the Irish government released 30-years-old archives in which the Tory leader's thoughts on the 'politburo' in Brussels has been recorded during a conversation with her Irish government.

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"In talking of a single currency, [Jacques] Delors must have had a rush of blood to the head," she said blasting at the then-European Union leader Jacques Delors. "We are not going to have a single currency."

The archives released date back to June 1990 when Thatcher was in conversation with Irish taoiseach Charles Haughey, where she described Delors as a "mere appointee".

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As per the papers, Thatcher wanted the European Commission to turn into a professional civil service with the aim of providing service to the ministers representing the governments, rather than taking initiatives.

She was apparently also against the European Court allegedly giving more power to the commission. "The days of appointed commissioners must be numbered. We must give power to the council of ministers," she said. "I am not handing over authority to a non-elected bureaucracy … I am getting completely fed up with the European community trying to tie us up with bureaucratic regulations."

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The Irish counterpart, Haughey, also alleged the commission of contacting the Irish local authorities and inviting them for a 'talk' in Brussels. "They are going behind the back of the government," he alleged.

Thatcher admitted that the commission was needed "to start off" but also believed that it has now become a "totally non-democratic power structure" and strongly opposed the idea of the European police force.

She had also made clear that she would not accept a central bank of the then 12 EU member states and would rather work with deutschmark to keep inflation down, as the Germans had experience of inflation and still kept its currency like a gold standard.

"They would think of economic growth and jobs and inflation as equal objectives and mix them all up. All we want is an effective gold standard and the deutschmark provides us with that," she said.

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