LONDON, April 7 The European Central Bank is
drawing up plans for large-scale asset purchases in case they
are needed but there remains some way to go before that point,
one of bank's top policymakers said on Monday.
"The inflation and deflation risks are more or less level in
EMU area which means that we do not see an imminent risk of
deflation. However, we are ready to prepare for such a
situation," Yves Mersch, one of the ECB's six Executive Board
members said at conference organised by Clearstream.
On Thursday, the ECB opened the door to possibly turning on
its money-printing presses to boost the euro zone economy and
keep inflation from staying too low.
It kept interest rates steady at 0.25 percent at its regular
meeting, but ECB President Mario Draghi said the central bank
had achieved unanimity that asset purchases, also known as
quantitative easing, might be needed to tackle inflation if it
proved persistently low.
(Reporting by Marc Jones and Huw Jones)