EU official: Fiscal stimulus until the pandemic is over

“There is a broad agreement not to withdraw the fiscal stimulus of the economy,” a senior EU official said yesterday (8 September) ahead of a Eurogroup meeting on Friday.

The meeting on Friday will be the first with the physical presence of economy ministers after seven months due to the pandemic and the first which will be chaired by the new Eurogroup chief Paschal Donohoe.

The EU official said the proposed reforms in terms of the Recovery Fund will be discussed thoroughly emphasising at the same time that the worst-case scenarios for the EU economy have been verified.

The EU fiscal rules of the Stability and Growth Pact have been suspended due to the pandemic and according to the official it’s highly probable that this will be the case for 2021 too.

“The time will come when we will need to withdraw fiscal stimulus when we return to normality,” the official said.

However, the criteria that will determine whether Europe will return to normality have not been specified yet.

“A fundamental perquisite is the epidemic to be under control and that people are able to continue their normal economic activity. Finding a coronavirus vaccine will be an important milestone,” the official said. (Sarantis Michalopoulos | EURACTIV.com)

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