Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa said on Wednesday that the recovery of the European economy is decisive not only for the member countries of the European Union (EU) but “for the whole world, because it will be a fundamental lever for a global-scale economic recovery.”
Speaking to journalists after the reopening of Portugal’s land borders with Spain, Costa voiced his support for the European Commission’s 750-billion-euro (848-billion-United States dollar) recovery fund proposal.
The European Council, which brings together the heads of state and government of the 27 EU member states, held the first round of negotiations via video conference on June 19, and their next meeting is scheduled for July 17 and 18, this time face-to-face in Brussels.
“It is an extraordinary opportunity to join efforts of the most developed economies in the world for a strong economic recovery,” said Costa.
Asked to comment on the reluctance of countries like the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark and Austria to support the recovery fund proposal, he said that he saw “no reason why they should be less committed than Portugal and Spain” to reviving the European economy.
Speaking alongside Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, Costa acknowledged that “there are different points of view” among the EU’s 27 member states but stressed that the crisis was “global.”
“The forecasts of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) are very clear: There is no country in the European Union that is not going to suffer a very severe economic crisis,” he said.
“This is as important for Portugal as for the Netherlands, as important for Spain as for Sweden, as important for Italy as for Denmark, as important for Germany as for France — it is fundamental for everyone,” Costa concluded. (1 euro = 1.13 U.S dollars)
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