Parliament President hopes EU can emerge from Coronavirus crisis with ‘stronger sense of community’

David Sassoli said the extent to which the Coronavirus crisis is devastating economies and citizens’ lives is becoming clear. 

Photo credit: European Parliament Audiovisual

By Martin Banks

Martin Banks is a senior reporter at the Parliament Magazine

24 Apr 2020


At a news briefing in Parliament on Thursday, Sassoli said that when he opened the video conference of EU leaders earlier in the day, he expressed his “deepest concern” about the crisis.

“We are now seeing the extent to which it is devastating our economies and citizens’ lives.”

Regarding the financial help that the EU can bring to bear in helping economies ravaged by the health crisis, Sassoli said he had "presented Parliament's position" as expressed in a resolution adopted by MEPs a week ago.


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“There is extra concern because we can now see a downward spiral and we will need all the instruments possible to save our economies, our heritage and to create jobs. We cannot do this alone - this is the absolute truth.”

He said, “I believe the [fiscal] instruments the EU has put forth are moving in the right direction while all the while new facilities - for example, the ESM – will also help address the emergency.”

“We can now see a downward spiral and we will need all the instruments possible to save our economies, our heritage and to create jobs. We cannot do this alone - this is the absolute truth” David Sassoli, Parliament President

“The Council today is taking the first step in the post-crisis period to address issue of rebuilding the economies of Europe.

“I called for a new Marshall Plan but the funds for this will not come from abroad this time but from within the EU and from our economies. We must finance this new Marshall Plan ourselves and that will open up a lot of questions.”

Sassoli said he had also called on EU leaders and heads of state at the start of the summit “to ensure we emerge from this crisis with a stronger sense of community.”

He added, “There must be a shared approach to the effort.”

Sassoli said that “recovery bonds” – or corona bonds as they have been called – is “one step in that direction.”

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