EU plans to give Spain 140 billion euros for economic recovery
The economic recovery plan announced yesterday by the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, may favour the activity most affected by the pandemic, in the most affected region of the entire State.
The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, presented an unprecedented economic recovery proposal for the EU Member States yesterday.
It needs a green light from both the Council and the Community Parliament for its implementation, but initially involves a payment of more than 140 billion euros to Spain, one of the countries most affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Of this amount, 77 billion would be a grant of non-repayable funds, while the other 63 billion is credits which will have to be paid back at some point.
The Canary Islands, as the autonomous community that is suffering the consequences of the economic slowdown the most, due to its enormous dependence on tourism, should the Von der Leyen initiative come to fruition, could benefit from extra aid to the tune of 10 billion euros.
This is the opinion of the MEP Juan Fernando López Aguilar, who in a press conference yesterday, stressed that "tourism is a priority in the recovery plan."
The Canarian politician, of the European socialists, admits that from his group, “we missed a more energetic reaction since the first minute of the pandemic, and we have had two plenary sessions in which we have demanded that the Commission take the reins", although he also admits that the Von der Leyen project “is reasonable and invites hope; not euphoria, but hope”.
In addition, he highlights that it represents "a qualitative advance" compared to other moments of crisis in the community: "It makes a difference with respect to what was, in our opinion, lousy management from 2009 onwards, the Great Recession; deeply wrong politics, and austerity."
On the other hand, he confirms that the recovery plan sends a positive message about the EU's reaction, in the face of skepticism from the countries of the South, the so-called frugal countries, who questioned the validity of unconditional transfers: “If there is four States at the moment that refuse to support this plan, they are in the minority and are not up to the task; they have not understood anything”.
Therefore, it welcomes the fact that the direct transfers have been included in the project, without requiring any type of structural reform: neither to lower wages, nor to reduce expenses in Health and Education; for the first time European bonds, indebtedness under the multiannual financial framework for the next 7 years”.
And he says that he is clear that "those of us who have been on the right side, of understanding the situation and of the political commitment to respond to the crisis, have been the socialists of Southern Europe", since "Pedro Sánchez and António Costa are the ones who courageously led the ambitious bid for what was called the European Marshall Plan, and this is similar to it; an unconditional investment plan, not of loans, but of gifts to repair the damage caused by the economic slowdown”.