"The Commission supports the institutions and member states
using all the tools at our disposal to mitigate the very
substantial, negative socio-economic consequences of the COVID
19 outbreak," a Commission spokeswoman said.
The Commission also said it was moving ahead with implementing a
decision of EU leaders from earlier this week to allow
governments to spend as much as they need to fight the epidemic
without falling foul of EU budget rules -- the Stability and
Growth Pact -- that limit government borrowing to underpin the
"We will propose shortly the activation of the general escape
clause under the Stability and Growth Pact. And this initiative
has been welcomed by the Eurogroup and the leaders. We stand
ready to take further actions," a Commission spokeswoman said.
"We stand ready to take further actions as the situation
evolves. The Commission will propose to the Council to apply the
full flexibility provided in the EU fiscal framework to allow
member states to implement all the measures needed to contain
the COVID19 outbreak and mitigate its negative consequences,"
"This flexibility allows member states to spend on healthcare
system, to immediate containment measures but also medical
equipment, increasing hospital capacity and so on so forth," she
(Additional reporting by Marine Strauss and Gabriela Baczynska;
Reporting by Jan Strupczewski)
[© 2020 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2020 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Thompson Reuters is solely responsible for this content.