Prime Minister Janez Janša: An agreement on the recovery package for the coronavirus epidemic is vital
Today Prime Minister Janez Janša attended an informal video-conference meeting of the European Council. At the meeting, the heads of government were briefed on the progress of the negotiations on future relations between the EU and the United Kingdom. The main topic of discussion was the new proposal for the multiannual financial framework and recovery instrument prepared by the European Commission. At the meeting the participants held a first exchange of views.
Prime Minister Janez Janša said an agreement on the recovery package had to be reached before the summer recess. Any delays would have a negative impact on the financial markets. The current, relatively favourable pandemic situation should not deceive us as it could change at any time. Reaching an agreement on the recovery instrument and the multiannual financial framework is therefore all the more vital. "Every week could mean a difference of a few billion euros," he said, expressing his support for the European Commission's proposal. The focus should be on the main objective of the recovery package, namely helping those Member States that have been most affected and have the least capacity to recover. It is important that the allocation of funds between Member States be based on the principle of solidarity as well as the principle of fairness.
Prime Minister Janez Janša strongly supported additional funding for cohesion policy, rural development and a Just Transition Fund. This funding will help deal effectively with the immediate consequences of the pandemic and contribute to the necessary transition to a green economy and rural regeneration. Mr Janša also said that we should not forget the outstanding issues regarding the multiannual financial framework: the use of new statistical data has a negative impact on the amount of cohesion funding to be received by Slovenia. The Prime Minister expressed a clear expectation that these issues be considered in further negotiations and that an appropriate solution be found. "The European Union has been hit hard by the pandemic. Now our leadership ability is being put to the test. We need timely and robust solutions that will be not only about sufficient financial resources but also about trust and the necessary optimism for the common future," he concluded.
All participants in today's meeting agreed that the Commission's proposal provided a good basis for further negotiations, which should move into a more intensive phase. The President of the European Council is expected to prepare a negotiating proposal in July, to be followed by a meeting of the European Council in Brussels with the aim of reaching an agreement before the summer recess, so that the entire package will be fully operational from the beginning of next year.