Brussels, Belgium- On Saturday the 18th of April 2020, the Youth of the European People’s Party (YEPP) adopted the ‘Statement on the European Union joint reaction to the economic crisis caused by Covid-19 pandemic’. The coronavirus pandemic has heavily affected various sectors of the European Union including economy and health. Although, the EU has taken numerous actions to counteract the negative impact of COVID-19, the pandemic has highlighted the cracks in the EU integration.
Member States have disproportionately responded to the crisis, amplifying the EU’s unpreparedness for crisis situations such as the coronavirus pandemic. The Statement outlines the achievements of the European Union, but also the need to take those further and deepen EU integration. The Statement in this regard argues for an improved communication and coordination among member states, with the EU institutions acting as a platform to facilitate this.
“The unquestioned duty of the current political class is to safeguard a European economy with strong fundamentals by using any possible monetary and fiscal tool.”
In the statement, YEPP proposes an increase in the EU budget to lessen the economic impact of the pandemic. Prioritising the increase in the overall budget, will aid in acquiring adequate resources to respond during and post-pandemic times. Among the suggestions in the statement is the implementation of stronger fiscal policies to guarantee the sustainable financing of member state’s needs.
Overall, this pandemic has highlighted the inadequacy of the current EU framework to combat the current and future pandemics. There is a discrepancy among various EU member states, in terms of economic stability and means to respond to this crisis efficiently. The budgetary increase would provide for additional resources to support member states who have been affected the most by COVID-19. The European Union must act in solidarity, across all levels, to ensure European stability.
“Solidarity is not only a moral obligation between partners but also the only available path to defend our national interests, our wealth and a prominent position in future global equilibriums.”