Daily Management Review

EU Finance Minister Finally Agree On Emergency Coronavirus Package Of €500 Billion


EU Finance Minister Finally Agree On Emergency Coronavirus Package Of €500 Billion
The finance minister of European Union countries finally agreed on a common emergency plan to support economies of the member countries from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 
The total emergency package agreed upon by the EU is worth €500 billion.
"This proposal contains bold and ambitious proposals that would have been unthinkable just a few weeks ago", the Portuguese Finance minister and president of the Eurogroup Mario Centeno said in a video conference on Thursday. "We can all remember the response to the financial crisis of the last decade, when Europe did too little too late. This time around is different."
The proposal "implements the strong response that Europe needs", he added.
The news of the agreement on the package was enthusiastically announced on social media shortly after it was decided.
"Excellent agreement between EU finance ministers on the economic response to coronavirus," French finance minister Bruno Le Maire tweeted. "500 billion euros will be made available immediately. A stimulus package is to come. Europe is standing up to face the seriousness of the situation."
"This is an important day for Europe. We will present an ambitious plan to the European Council", Italy's Finance minister Roberto Gualtieri said. "We will fight to make it a reality," Le Maire added.
The Dutch Finance minister Wopke Hoekstra said that the Eurogroup had managed to come to a good conclusion after a series of long and intense conversations over the issue. “We made sensible agreements together for Europe and the Netherlands to face the coronacrisis", Hoekstra said.
The "comprehensive package" will help EU member states to "finance the medical costs" and "build national economies on the long-term", Hoekstra added. However, on the issue of  "corona bonds" or "Euro bonds" – which is a joint debt that is issued by member countries of the EU, not all of the parties managed to come to an agreement
"Some member states have expressed the view that this should be done by common debt instruments," Centeno said. "Other member states said alternative ways should be found."
"We are and will remain opposed to Eurobonds. We think this concept will not help Europa or the Netherlands on the long-term," Hoekstra said.
According to media reports, the talks were being blocked by the Netherlands since Tuesday.
"The meeting ended with ministers' applause," the spokesperson for the Eurogroup said.