Merkel Calls to Save EU Economy by 2021
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that EU countries need to negotiate a plan to restore the Union’s economy so fast that it takes effect on January 1, 2021.
“The fact that complex negotiations are ahead is obvious, we will not make a decision at the next EU Council. The aim should be to ensure that the national parliaments have enough time to discuss this in the autumn, and so that on January 1, it (the assistance program) could take effect,” she said at a press conference after talks with regional heads of the former East Germany.
Germany and France previously proposed the creation of a fund to restore the European economy of €500 billion. This proposal was welcomed by the head of the Council of the EU countries Charles Michel and Ursula von der Leyen, the head of the European Commission, but the plan came across criticism in Austria, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands. They offer an alternative plan – affected EU member states will be able to get help from the fund in the form of loans, not subsidies.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, speaking on Wednesday at an extraordinary session of the European Parliament, said that the EC is proposing its own version of the plan – to create a fund of 750 billion, and to give the Union countries €500 billion in grants and €250 billion in loans. Merkel, responding to a request for comment on this plan, said that it needs to be studied first.