May 15, 2020
EU Recovery Plan sacrificed to Brussels’ agenda: MacManus

EU Recovery Plan sacrificed to Brussels’ agenda: MacManus

“The people of Europe are being let down by the EU” claims Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus, who sits on the influential Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee.

MacManus believes the potential for an effective, solidarity based EU Recovery Plan has been sacrificed to Brussel’s agenda of centralisation and that the Commission’s approach endangers CAP and other EU social spending.

MEP MacManus said:

“For months Europe has been ravaged by the deadly Corona virus which has killed tens of thousands of people and resulted in lockdowns across the continent that will have deep economic impacts. The community spirit and the mass showings of human resilience offered the potential for the countries of Europe to respond with solidarity and to lead with a response plan that matched this crisis.”

“Instead, what we have got is a bureaucrat led muddle with the EU’s Seven Year Budget now inseparable from the Recovery Fund. This means CAP and other social spending is now in the same pot as the recovery fund.  There are many whose agenda is to water down and weaken CAP and they now have the upper hand.”

“A real alternative would have seen the EU work directly with governments who are best placed to know their own needs resulting from the crisis. Such a standalone European Recovery Fund, of at least EUR 1.5 trillion, could have been financed through perpetual bonds with zero interest rates. It would be distributed to the Member States using grants without any macroeconomic or other conditions attached by the Commission. That would show real solidarity.

MacManus keen to point out the unfairness of further burdening debt stricken member states said: “Unfortunately, the Coronabonds issue is forgotten and there seems to be zero interest in Brussels in making sure the cost of this crisis isn’t simply added to the debt burden of countries. It is hard to imagine a worse outcome for workers, farmers and small businesses in Ireland and across Europe. The EU Parliament, which is supposed to represent the people, today passed a motion that mainly focussed on increasing EU taxes as an ideological fixation. This hijacking of the momentum towards solidarity to simply play out old EU internal battles does not serve people across Europe well. The Irish people, and people across Europe, have been let down by the EU when it could have stepped up and served them.” ENDS

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