EU leaders approve record budget and massive covid-stimulus package
EU 2020, © Geisler-Fotopress
After four days and four nights of intense negotiations in Brussels, the EU heads of government agreed on a compromise in the early hours of Tuesday, 21 July. ...
After four days and four nights of intense negotiations in Brussels, the EU heads of government agreed on a compromise in the early hours of Tuesday, 21 July. While the 7-year framework for the EU’s general budget will increase to 1,074 trillion Euro, the additional economic stimulus and investment package for post-covid recovery will be 750 billion, of which 390 billion will be paid out as grants and 360 billion as credits. During the negotiations, the amount of credits to be disbursed had been the main bone of contention between Germany and France as well as Italy and Spain, who are to receive the biggest share of the package, on the one side, and the so-called “frugal four”, i.e. the Netherlands, Austria, Denmark and Sweden on the other side. The funds for the package will be raised by the EU on the financial markets and their repayment until 2058 guaranteed jointly by EU member states - a step into new territory. In spite of the sometimes heated debate during the prolonged meeting, the outcome demonstrates once more that the EU, in the face of new challenges, can pull together and find common ground to charter a joint course ahead.