Euro Zone (Euro Area) Definition, Features, Countries

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Euro Zone (Euro Area) – Definition, Features, European Countries

The Euro Zone or Eurozone also referred to as Euro Area is a monetary union made up of all the member states of the European Union (EU) whose official currency is the euro 💶.

Euro Zone (Euro Area)
Euro Zone (Euro Area)

The euro area is a monetary union. In order to have a monetary union, there must be a situation in which at least two countries share the same official currency. In the euro area, this requirement is met. In other words, more than two countries have the euro as their official currency. Specifically, there are 19 states.

This does not mean that the euro cannot be accepted as a bargaining chip in other countries. On the contrary, in many countries the euro can be used as a bargaining chip. For example, Andorra. Now, the place where it officially operates is in the euro area.

It should be noted that, usually, the name used to designate the euro area is eurozone. However, this term is not the official one. The term that the European Central Bank (ECB) indicates as official is the euro area.

Features of the Euro Area / Euro Zone

The monetary union has several characteristics that make it different. Features such as the body that regulates it, the monetary authority or the way in which monetary policies are carried out are some of them. The characteristics of the euro area are:

  • The monetary policy is conducted by the Banco Central European and the Eurosystem. With which, they are the amount of bills that are printed and the number of coins that are minted.
  • The political body that represents the eurozone is the Euro group.
  • Those countries that do not belong to the euro area are not represented in these bodies.
  • Using the euro as the usual currency of exchange does not allow you to have a voice and vote in the institutions that make decisions about the euro. Two cases could be Monaco or San Marino.

List of Euro Zone (Euro Area) Countries

System European Union
Type Monetary union
Currency Euro 💶
Established January 1st, 1999
Countries (Members)
19 states
  • 23px Flag of Austria.svg Austria
  • 23px Flag of Belgium %28civil%29.svg Belgium
  • 23px Flag of Cyprus.svg Cyprus
  • 23px Flag of Estonia.svg Estonia
  • 23px Flag of Finland.svg Finland
  • 23px Flag of France.svg France
  • 23px Flag of Germany.svg Germany
  • 23px Flag of Greece.svg Greece
  • 23px Flag of Ireland.svg Ireland
  • 23px Flag of Italy.svg Italy
  • 23px Flag of Latvia.svg Latvia
  • 23px Flag of Lithuania.svg Lithuania
  • 23px Luxembourg
  • 23px Flag of Malta.svg Malta
  • 23px Flag of the Netherlands.svg Netherlands
  • 23px Flag of Portugal.svg Portugal
  • 23px Flag of Slovakia.svg Slovakia
  • 23px Flag of Slovenia.svg Slovenia
  • 23px Flag of Spain.svg Spain

Difference Between European Union and Euro Area

Europe, as a continent, without differentiating between recognized and limited recognition states, we could say that it is made up of more than 50 states. Of these states, not all belong to the European Union (EU). Specifically, the European Union is made up of 28 countries.

In this sense, not all the states that make up the European Union belong to the euro zone or eurozone. The European Union is an economic and political union between countries in the European continent. Meanwhile, the euro area is a monetary union (unification of the currency).

That said, of the 28 countries that belong to the European Union, only 19 states share common currency. That is, only 19 states belong to the euro zone / eurozone (Euro Area).

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