There are moments in politics and policy that change the course of history; when they can be summarised in three words, they are the best.
Mario Draghi’s statement back in 2012 that the European Central Bank will do “whatever it takes” to save the euro was such a moment: from then on, the speculators’ attack on weaker eurozone members’ sovereign debt stopped.
Another such moment came three years later, when in 2015 German chancellor Angela Merkel allowed one million refugees to enter Germany. “Wir schaffen das” (we can manage this), she said.
The financial crisis of 2007-2009 has left a lot of collapsed Spanish castles in its wake, hitting Spanish banks hard.
Pictures of Spain’s ghost towns were splashed across the world’s newspapers at the beginning of the eurozone debt crisis. True, they weren’t as impressive as the Chinese ghost cities, but they show what excess debt and an inflated real estate sector can do to a country – and to its banks.
However, more than five years on since the crisis, the story is slowly changing.