VIENNA (Reuters) - The European Central Bank may not need to use unconventional policy options to stimulate the euro zone’s economy, Governing Council member Ewald Nowotny said on Friday, adding that he sees neither inflation nor deflation risks.
ECB President Mario Draghi said on Thursday the bank had a raft of options at its disposal in addition to interest rates, but economic conditions did not currently warrant such moves.
“As Draghi always says, we have it on the shelf, and then we’ll see what we take from it or if it’s needed at all,” Nowotny said on the fringes of a news conference in Vienna.
“Because if it does, as we hope, come to an economic improvement in the second half of the year, that will show to what extent additional measures are needed, if at all.”
Nowotny said, however, there were “considerable risks” to this forecast, which was based on an expectation of improved exports and internal demand.
But he said he did not see deflationary tendencies spreading from southern euro zone countries to the bloc as a whole.
“We don’t see that for the euro zone as a whole,” he said. “We see for the euro zone neither an inflationary risk nor a deflationary risk.”
Reporting by Georgina Prodhan