PM to tell EUCO countries need grants, not loans to recover from coronavirus

PM to tell EUCO countries need grants, not loans to recover from coronavirus

Greek Premier Kyriakos Mitsotakis will tell his EU counterparts on Thursday that member states need grants and not new loans to help their economies recover from the economic slump caused by the measures taken to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

“In a European economy with high public and private debt, we know what we don't need. We don’t need new loans, we need grants,” government spokesman Stelios Petsas said at a regular press conference explaining Greece’s position which will be presented in a video conference later on Thursday.

Mitsotakis will also say that member-states need a joint debt instrument to respond to the crisis, such as a “joint eurobond,” Petsas said.

EU leaders will discus the scale and nature of the bloc’s recovery package.

Petsas also acknowledged the inefficiency of the Labor Ministry’s distance training voucher programs for scientists and self-employed professionals, which was scrapped on Wednesday, amid widespread criticism from opposition parties and users that they were a makeshift and below par.

“When so many measures are taken in such a short time, it is logical to make mistakes. What is important is that mistakes are corrected, which we did,” he said.

Asked whether Labour Minister Yiannis Vroutsis still enjoys the prime minister's trust after the failure of the program, he simply responded: “Yes.”

Vroutsis on Wednesday conceded that program's content was not up to par and did “not fully serve the purpose for which it was originally chosen by the government.”

He clarified however that beneficiaries would receive the 600 euros for the month of April. 

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