Europe has virtually emerged from the 2008 crisis, and it is worth comparing the various paths countries took to recovery.

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Nations like Spain and Greece faced difficult paths to recovery, and as a result received international support for their banking sector. Massive bailout packages helped to keep their financial systems afloat.

At the same time, countries like Germany stimulated recovery by utilizing their national budget. For recapitalization and asset relief, Germany’s banking sector received over 144 billion Euros following the financial crisis, equal to 5.3% of its GDP. On the other hand, many European countries’ financial sectors received negligible support. In the Italian case, there was only 7.9 billion euros, or 0.5% of its GDP, a small fraction of the German number. France followed a similar path, with only 26.2 billion euros, or 1.3% of its GDP.

This was a path followed by many European member states. With Europe facing an ongoing mire of euro-skeptic, nationalistic parties, now more than ever is a time for European unity from the center.