European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the coronavirus pandemic is an unprecedented challenge not only for health systems, but also for the economies of the EU member states.
The European Commission will allocate € 37 billion to support the economies of the European Union to mitigate the negative effects of the spread of coronavirus. This was announced March 13 by the press service of the European Commission.
“The coronavirus pandemic is a test for us all. It is an unprecedented challenge not only for our health systems, but also for our economies … We will do everything necessary to support Europeans and the European economy.” – quoted by the press service European Commission President Ursulu von der Leyen.
According to Deutsche Welle, the funds that are planned to be allocated during the coronavirus pandemic are included in the EU budget to support underdeveloped regions. In order to redirect them to other goals, it is still necessary to obtain the consent of the Council of the EU and the European Parliament.
Among other EU steps – Allocation of € 8 billion for loans for 100 thousand small and medium enterprises, as well as the provision of credit vacations to debtor firms.
According to the forecast of the European Commission, this year the EU economy should have grown by 1.4%, but due to coronavirus, probably, such growth will not be.
“Now we can’t give a new forecast, it will be in May. But based on the models of our calculations, it is very likely that the growth of the eurozone and the entire EU this year will be negative, and the decline may turn out to be very significant,” – quotes the “German wave” Maarten Vervey, Head of the Directorate General for Economics and Finance of the European Commission.
The head of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde, said that Europe would face a “powerful economic shock” comparable to the financial crisis of 2008 if the EU countries did not take urgent measures in response to the spread of coronavirus infection.
An outbreak of COVID-19 coronavirus infection began in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. March 11, the World Health Organization announced the spread of coronavirus pandemic. According to WHO data, on March 13, 132,758 people were infected with coronavirus in more than 120 countries, 4,955 people died. Most deaths – 3180 – are recorded in China.
In Europe, the epicenter of the outbreak of coronavirus is in Italy, where the number of infected has increased to 17,660. Over the last day in the country there was a record number of deaths – 250 (the total number of deaths from coronavirus increased to 1266).
In Ukraine, as of March 13, three cases of coronavirus infection were confirmed (two of them in the Chernivtsi region), one of the cases, a 71-year-old resident of the Zhytomyr region, died. Another 65-year-old Ukrainian citizen died of a coronavirus in Italy, where she lived and worked.