European Fiscal Compact
The Fiscal Compact (formally, the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union; also referred to as TSCG or more plainly the Fiscal Stability Treaty), is an intergovernmental treaty introduced as a new stricter version of the Stability and Growth Pact, signed on 2 March 2012 by all member states of the European Union (EU), except the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, and Croatia (subsequently acceding the EU in July 2013). The treaty entered into force on 1 January 2013 for the 16 states which completed ratification prior of this date. As of 1 April 2014, it had been ratified and entered into force for all 25 signatories.While the entire treaty applies to ratifying eurozone states, only Title V, covering euro summit participation, automatically applies for ratifying non-eurozone member states. However, these states can attach a declaration to their instrument of ratification stating their desire to also be bound by the treaty's fiscal provisions (Title III) and/or enhanced economic coordination provisions (Title IV). Both Denmark and Romania have declared themselves to be bound by all treaty titles, while Bulgaria declared itself bound by all treaty titles except of Title IV.Member states bound by the fiscal provisions of the treaty will face annual fines up to 0.1% of GDP, if they after one year of the Fiscal Compact entering into force for them, have failed to enact a domestic ""implementation law"" establishing a self-correcting mechanism, guided by surveillance of a governmentally independent fiscal advisory council, which shall guarantee their national budget be in balance or surplus under the treaty's definition. The treaty defines a balanced budget as a general budget deficit not exceeding 3.0% of the gross domestic product (GDP), and a structural deficit not exceeding a country-specific Medium-Term budgetary Objective (MTO) which at most can be set to 0.5% of GDP for states with a debt‑to‑GDP ratio exceeding 60% - or at most 1.0% of GDP for states with debt levels within the 60%-limit. The country-specific MTOs are recalculated every third year and might be set at stricter levels compared to what the treaty allows at most. The treaty also contains a direct copy of the ""debt brake"" criteria outlined in the Stability and Growth Pact, which defines the rate at which debt levels above the limit of 60% of GDP shall decrease.If the budget or estimated fiscal account for any ratifying state is found to be noncompliant with the deficit or debt criteria, the state is obliged to rectify the issue. If a state is in breach at the time of the treaty's entry into force, the correction will be deemed to be sufficient if it delivers sufficiently large annual improvements to remain on a country specific predefined ""adjustment path"" towards the limits at a midterm horizon. Should a state suffer a significant recession, it will be exempted from the requirement to deliver a fiscal correction for as long as it lasts.Despite being an International treaty outside the EU legal framework, all treaty provisions function as an extension to existing EU regulations, utilising the same reporting instruments and organisational structures already created within EU in the three areas: Budget discipline enforced by Stability and Growth Pact (extended by Title III), Coordination of economic policies (extended by Title IV), and Governance within the EMU (extended by Title V). The treaty states that the signatories shall attempt to incorporate the Fiscal Compact into the EU's legal framework, on the basis of an assessment of the experience with its implementation, by 1 January 2018 at the latest.