The Recovery Fund Faces a Tricky Passage

By Christian Odendahl and John Springford The Commission’s proposed recovery fund is macroeconomically meaningful. The ‘frugals’ should focus less on negotiating away the transfers to harder-hit countries, and more on how the money is spent. The European Commission has turned the €500 billion EU recovery fund proposed by Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, and Emmanuel Macron, the…

EU Dialogue with the Financial Sector

The European Commission has launched its first roundtable meeting with the European financial sector, including consumer and business representatives, to explore how it can develop best practices to support EU citizens and businesses. As announced in the Banking package on 28 April 2020 on 28 April 2020, this meeting marks the beginning of a dialogue…

Commission Approves €500m MFA Loan to Ukraine

The European Commission, on behalf of the EU, has approved the disbursement of a €500 million loan to Ukraine as part of its fourth macro-financial assistance (MFA) programme.  With this disbursement, the EU has now provided Ukraine with €3.8 billion in MFA loans since 2014. This is the largest amount of MFA the EU has…

Freight Leading Recovery at Brussels Airport

Although the passenger terminal at Brussels Airport is currently idling while awaiting recovery, the cargo area at Brussels Airport is in full swing. Around sixty cargo flights operate every day, whether by full cargo aircraft, express services or passenger aircraft. In this coronavirus crisis period, the demand for protective clothing, face masks and test kits…

EU Public Procurement

BusinessEurope has published its position paper on the adoption of an International Procurement Instrument (IPI) by the EU.  Public procurement is an important engine for economic growth, with over 250.000 public authorities in the EU purchasing goods, services, works and supplies, amounting to around EUR 2 trillion every year, accounting for approximately 14% of the…

Bringing Europe’s Economy Back on Track

Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron  have proposed that the EU borrows on the financial markets in order to disperse some €500bn  through grants to European economies hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic. Under the Franco-German proposal the member states receiving the funds would not need to repay the cash. Liability for the debt would instead…

€3 Billion to Fight COVID-19 in EU Neighbourhood

The European Parliament has approved €3 billion in loans to help EU neighbours and partner countries deal with the fallout of COVID-19. The loans, which will be given on highly favourable terms and disbursed over a year, will help the following ten countries whose economies have been pushed into recession by the pandemic. The are:…

Soros calls for Bond Issue to tackle COVID-19

George Soros has called for countries including Germany and the Netherlands to “think again” and consider his proposal that the EU should issue perpetual bonds to fund the two trillion Euros needed to tackle COVID-19 and climate change.  The financier and philanthropist says these threats are the “crisis of my lifetime” that “endangers the survival…

Can the IMF accept COVID-19-struck Lebanon’s ‘reform-for-support’ request despite concerns over Hezbollah and Bassil?

By John Grogan Lebanese poet Khahil Gibran wrote in the 1920’s: “My Lebanon is a serene mountain sitting between the sea and the plains, like a poet between one eternity and another.” When I first met the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Lebanese Parliament Yassine Jaber on a delegation to the Westminster…