Thursday, 21 Oct 2021

EU masterplan laid bare: Brussels’ damning plot for Italy in recovery fund row

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Last week, EU leaders finally struck a deal on a huge coronavirus recovery package after a fourth night of sometimes bitter talks. The €750bn (£677bn) coronavirus fund will be used as loans and grants to the countries hit hardest by the virus, such as Italy and Spain. The remaining money represents the EU budget for the next seven years.

The talks began last Friday, with a divide emerging between the hardest hit nations and those intent on a more “frugal” package of measures.

Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria all pushed back on an initial package of grants worth €500bn (£450bn), reportedly causing French President Emmanuel Macron to bang his fists in anger.

The package will now face technical negotiations by members, and needs ratification by the European Parliament.

While many Italians welcomed the news, according to Professor Vladimiro Giacchè, economist, philosopher and President of the Europe Research Center in Rome, the recovery fund is nothing but “blackmail”.

In a recent interview with, Mr Giacché said: “The characteristics of this agreement, and the senseless decision not to abolish but only to suspend the pro-cyclical and economically depressive treaties put in place during the previous crisis (starting with the Fiscal Compact), are the best guarantee that sooner or later we will return to dance…

“The main difference between the Recovery Fund and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) is that not all the funds from the Recovery Fund are new debt.

“The major feature in common is the presence of conditionalities that can be activated.”

Mr Giacché claimed that the agreement is without a doubt a historical turning point, but noted that “there is not much to be happy about”.

He explained: “We have new debt, funds that will begin to arrive maybe in a year, and only conditionally.

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“According to reliable calculations, the extra money we will receive as a grant is equivalent to the extra money that we paid into the Community funds only in the years 2014-2018.

“But Italy has been a net creditor of the EU budget for a long time before that.”

He added: “In addition, their use will be subject to conditions related to the alignment of our policies with the ‘recommendations’ of the European Commission.

“It doesn’t seem like a good deal. “

On the conditionalities that are linked to reforms to be implemented, Mr Giacché noted: “The point is that the principle of solidarity is not the basis of the Treaties.

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“At the basis of the Treaties there is competition between countries, centered on social dumping and tax dumping.

“As is known, some of the Frugal countries specialise in particular in the second type of dumping, and therefore manages to appropriate part of the tax revenues of others.

“Those conditionalities can certainly be defined as blackmail, with the aim to expropriate our country from the possibility of practising an autonomous economic policy.”

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