December 7th, 2011
05:09 AM GMT
(CNN) - Last week Olli Rehn, Europe's Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs, warned the eurozone was entering a critical phrase to solve its debt crisis, which has deepened since Greece took its first bailout in May 2010. Rehn said the region has "10 days to complete and conclude the crisis response of the European Union."
Quest Means Business has been counting down the 10 days leading to the eurozone summit meeting. Some key moments so far:
December 1 - We heard the first talk of stronger fiscal union among the 17 nations united under the single currency. Unlike other currencies, the euro members still have separate tax rates, budgets and other fiscal planning.
December 2 - World markets rally, and Europe markets finish their best week of gains since 2008.
December 5 – Italy's new prime minister, Mario Monti, presents a proposal with $41 billion in new taxes and spending cuts for a start of "painful measures" to help the eurozone's third largest economy emerge from its budget crisis.
December 6 – World markets in Asia and Europe awaken to the news that S&P issued an unprecedented downgrade warning to 15 of the eurozone's member nations – including Germany and France, the twin economic titans of euro currency members.
December 7 – A leaked memo reveals that European nations could be penalized by being stripped of some powers if they fail to manage their budgets, according to the note sent to leaders from European Commission President Herman Van Rompuy. The confidential proposal, obtained by CNN’s Nina dos Santos, suggested details of a plan perhaps even stricter that of those German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Any perceived loss of sovereignty could well be a sticking point for the 17 nations as they ready for Friday’s important summit.
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