In budget summit, EU leaders live up to low expectations
Big differences remain over crisis recovery plan ahead of mid-July showdown By David M. Herszenhorn, Jacopo Barigazzi and Maïa de La Baume European Council President Charles Michel set very low expectations for a leaders’ summit on Friday, and he can now boast the results were as meager as he predicted, maybe even worse.
After a roughly four-hour videoconference to discuss a proposed €1.85 trillion budget and coronavirus recovery package, the EU’s 27 heads of state and government did little more than reaffirm some entrenched differences on the most fundamental issues, including: the total size of the initiative; a scheme to take on €750 billion in joint debt to provide recovery “grants;” the so-called rebates that off-set the overall payments by some big contributors to the bloc’s budget; and the prospect of new “own resources” — revenue from taxes and levies that could be used to pay the giant debt bill down the line.
In the end, Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen could only claim consensus on the need for an ambitious, aggressive response to the economic shock of the coronavirus pandemic, and on the perhaps vain shared hope of reaching a swift deal by the end of July. To that end, Michel said he would convene an in-person summit in mid-July, the first such gathering since the outbreak of the virus, in order to undertake what are expected to be ferocious negotiations.
Read more at https://www.politico.eu/article/european-council-budget-recovery-package-summit-analysis/
EU recovery plan — By the numbers
POLITICO breaks down the blueprint for reviving Europe’s economy By Lili Bayer, Francesco Piccinelli and Laura Greenhalgh After a flurry of paperwork, it’s number-crunching time.
In a videoconference on Friday, EU leaders will discuss the European Commission’s twin-pronged plan to revive the Continent’s economy — a revamped €1.1 trillion long-term budget and a €750 billion recovery fund.
Since the Commission put forward the plan, officials from EU member countries have been diving into the details to figure out what’s in it for them — and what they want to change.
Here’s a breakdown of the key facts and figures the leaders will be debating
Read more at https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-recovery-plan-by-the-numbers/