The European Commission said on April 22 that it had adopted a proposal for a three billion euro macro-financial assistance package to 10 enlargement and neighbourhood partners to help them to limit the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The proposal comes on top of the ‘Team Europe’ strategy, the EU’s robust and targeted response to support partner countries’ efforts in tackling the coronavirus pandemic,” the EC said.
“It represents an important demonstration of the EU’s solidarity with these countries at a time of unprecedented crisis.”
The proposal, following a preliminary assessment of financing needs, provides for the macro-financial assistance funds to be distributed as follows: the Republic of Albania (180 million euro), Bosnia and Herzegovina (250 million euro), Georgia (150 million euro), the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (200 million euro), Kosovo (100 million euro), the Republic of Moldova (100 million euro), Montenegro (60 million euro), the Republic of North Macedonia (160 million), the Republic of Tunisia (600 million euro) and Ukraine (1.2 billion euro).
The macro-financial assistance funds will be made available for 12 months in the form of loans on highly favourable terms to help these countries cover their immediate, urgent financing needs, the EC said.
“Together with the International Monetary Fund’s support, the funds can contribute to enhancing macroeconomic stability and creating space to allow resources to be allocated towards protecting citizens and mitigating the coronavirus pandemic’s negative socio-economic consequences.”
This instrument also remains available for other eligible countries experiencing balance-of-payments difficulties, the EC said.
In a separate statement on April 22, the EC said that following a request for assistance from Albania via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, Austria has offered gloves and hand disinfectant. The EU is coordinating and co-financing the delivery of the aid shipments to Albania.
To help tackle the coronavirus, Austria is also sending gloves, disinfectant and other items to Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Moldova. Serbia will also receive blankets, mattresses and tents for migrants in the country via the Mechanism from Austria.
This is part of overall EU support to the Western Balkans and the region, which includes financial assistance, the EC said.
(Photo: Miroslav Saricka/freeimages.com)
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