Interested in Language
In the news article "NATO invites Russia to join Europe missile shield", it says:
NATO says the cost of the system would be relatively cheap when spread across the entire 28-nation alliance — euro200 million euros, or about $260 million, over 10 years. But critics contend that's a big pricetag for Europe, suffering from a debt crisis that has led to higher unemployment while forcing governments to raise taxes, cut services and slash civil servant salaries amid austerity drives for many nations.Does it mean that each nation has to pay $ 260 million? It cannot be the total cost, so I think that it must be for each nation. But in the next sentence, it says, "that's a big pricetag for Europe". Is entire Europe suffering from debt crisis? I have read about some countries having debt problems, so I think it may be more accurate to say something like 'many countries in Europe suffering from debt crisis'. Or does it mean that since some countries (suffering from debt crisis) may not be able to pay that much money, therefore, Europe may not be able to afford it?
Thank you lauralie2.
Over 10 years, that would be $ 26 million a year, and spread across 28 nations, would mean less than a million a year for each nation. If they are not able to spend even that much for a shield then things must be really bad in Europe.
Also, saying that Europe is suffering from a debt crisis doesn't mean that every country has a problem, just that Europe overall does. It would make sense even without the EU if many countries had a problem. With the EU it makes even more sense - the economies are closely connected and most share the same currency.
Thank you Munch. I understand what you wrote about how the economies are closely connected and see how that can have an overall effect on Europe.
I agree that it is too cheap. Since $260 million is close to the cost of a Boeing 747 Jumbo, I think $260 million as the share of cost for entire Europe seems not possible. And moreover it says over 10 years. So it seems even less possible, unless the US is again at some "creative financing" schemes.
One thing is clear: the meaning of the original sentence is unclear. We can only guess.
your words console me about my inability to understand.
If native speakers have different interpretations, then what chance do we have? I hope such material is not in English exams such as TOEFL and IELTS.