Letter: Vote for the euro

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The Independent Culture
Sir: As a small business which conducts low-value transactions in Europe we are keen on the euro. We particularly hope it will save us time and money in making and receiving payments. We have taken the DTI advice seriously, and we are invoicing European customers in euros.

The problem comes when we try to use the banking system. Many UK banks claim to offer euro accounts, with a cheque book if you want it. But when you press them you find that the cheques are treated as foreign currency anywhere outside the UK, so they would be subject to clearing charges in Euroland and would be no more acceptable to the payee than a sterling cheque would be. Indeed the banks say that, because there is no common clearing system in Europe, the same thing would apply to payments between two participating countries such as France and Germany.

We have received very few invoices in euros from the participating countries. Yesterday we did receive one, from a supplier in the Netherlands, specifying that we had to convert the euro total into, and pay in, sterling.

JOHN GRAHAM

Corporate Books

Modbury, Devon

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