HELSINKI, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- Olli Rehn, European Union (EU) Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner, cautiously welcomed on Wednesday a U.S. emergency "fiscal cliff" plan that would help prevent the U.S. economy from depression.
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a Senate bill late on Tuesday night, ending weeks of political bickering around the "fiscal cliff" -- massive tax hikes and across-the-board spending cuts once due to take effect on the first day of 2013.
The deal blocked most impending tax increases and put off spending cuts, but left a slew of issues unresolved.
Rehn admitted to Helsinki News that the deal was a good news for the EU, because it would help prevent the U.S. economy and therefore the global economy from a straight-line decline.
However, he stressed that it was only a "defensive victory", as there were no further solutions on balancing the U.S. federal government's public finance and its continuously increasing debt.
Temporarily avoiding the "fiscal cliff" would not stop the downturn of the eurozone economy, he told the Finnish language daily newspaper.
A gradual fiscal balance would be the most favorable solution for Europe, said Rehn, adding that it would impose negative effects if the U.S. administration continued to raise the debt.
Even though the European economy was currently in recession, Rehn expressed his optimism about the prospects for the global economy, saying "The European market is getting stable, the U.S. fiscal policy is optimistic and the Chinese economy will continue to grow."