It is too early to call on some European Union countries for another common stimulus for economies affected by the Coronavirus crisis. This was stated today by Vice President of the European Commission, Margaret Westager, who states that the Union must now focus on the successful use of the approved redemption fund. At the same time, some EU commissioners do not hide the fact that a package worth 750 billion euros (more than 19 trillion crowns) could be the first step towards a permanent common debt.
The commission wants the first funds raised through the joint loan, unprecedented among member states since the summer, to be distributed. Nevertheless, politicians in some countries, led by France, are already calling for a new stimulus package in light of the expected effects of the epidemic. The criteria for the first fund were agreed upon by the leaders of member states last summer after the first wave of the Covid epidemic, but the effects of the second winter wave were, according to supporters of more money flowing into the economy, at least dangerous. For example, French European Affairs Minister Clement Bion said over the weekend that the European Union needs more public investment in order not to lag behind the United States. US President Joe Biden wants to pump an unprecedented $ 4 trillion (84 trillion crowns) into the economy because of the pandemic.
“I find it odd to talk about a new stimulus plan that we don’t know if we need, and we still have a lot to do“Vestager” told the French newspaper Le Echo today. I came across an incomplete list of countries that took all the necessary steps to launch the fund. National recovery plans, on the basis of which the European Union’s executive branch will distribute the funds. So far, the commission has received from 17 countries, including all major economies, and the Czech Republic is not the only country among them in the four Visegrad. The Czech government approved a plan to use 172 billion crowns from the fund today. .
Although the Commission does not envisage the rapid introduction of further support measures, in the long term, according to some commissioners, the reuse of public debt is not excluded. In addition to France, this idea has always been supported mainly by southern European countries, while the Netherlands, Austria and Scandinavia in particular are opposed.
“The more we succeed in putting this fund into practice, the more room there will be for discussions about introducing a permanent instrument, perhaps of a similar nature.Valdes Dombrowskis, Vice President of the European Commission, told members of the European Parliament last week. Likewise, European Union Economic Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said it would be critical for EU countries to agree to new taxes and fees, which Brussels wants to pay off common debt by mid-century.
Initial discussions among the leaders showed that they had different views, for example, about introducing a special corporate tax, carbon duty or introducing emissions allowances for new sectors. In addition, unlike the Czech Republic and other countries, several countries have not yet agreed to increase their guarantees to the EU budget, without which the Commission cannot borrow money for the reconstruction fund under the best of circumstances.
Source: CTK, Reuters
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