"The EPP Group wants to use all available EU budgetary means to support the fight against the coronavirus outbreak", says Siegried Mureșan MEP and Andrey Novakov MEP, ahead of today's decision of the European Parliament to make EU funds available for investments in healthcare systems and for regions most affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
"The money we send today shows our respect for all doctors, nurses, police and social workers in our home countries and across the EU. They need to be better equipped. We hope that the European Parliament’s ability to immediately respond through the Cohesion Policy and the EU budget will strengthen peoples' trust in the Union. Saving lives and businesses today, guarantees that there will be an EU tomorrow", says Novakov, who is the EPP Group Spokesman on Regional Development.
One of the two budgetary laws makes 37 billion euro of the Cohesion Policy funds available to Member States that want to get investments in their healthcare systems and in other sectors of their economies in response to the pandemic.
The other law extends the scope of the EU Solidarity Fund, which, so far, could only be used for natural disasters and public health emergencies. The money is not just available for EU Member States, but also for countries negotiating their accession to the EU.
"A friend in need is a friend indeed", says Novakov. "Unprecedented times require unprecedented actions. The EPP Group fully supports these measures and will push for their swift adoption as a matter of urgency. However, we can and must do more to help our citizens and healthcare systems, save our economies or protect our union. The European Commission must propose further initiatives to alleviate the crisis. We need solidarity at EU level and this can only be achieved through concrete actions", concludes Mureșan, who is the EPP Group Chair for Budget and Structural Policies.
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 187 Members from all EU Member States