“Non vogliamo un Piano Juncker 2. Servono Recovery Bond e più risorse proprie”

By Tommaso Gallavotti – Adnkronos – 14 may 2020

The Recovery Plan that the European Commission is discussing at the moment must not be a “Juncker 2 plan”, but must be financed in an appropriate manner, focusing both on the issuance of bonds and an increase in the EU’s own resources. This is underlined by Sandro Gozi, MEP of Renew Europe, elected in France with Renaissance.

To adequately finance the Recovery Fund, says Gozi to Adnkronos, “we need Recovery Bonds and own resources. We ask not the States, but the giants of digital, finance and polluters to pay more for Europe, in favour of all citizens, starting with the most affected country, which is Italy. It is not such a complicated position to achieve, it is a matter of enlarging that part of the EU budget that already provides for own resources”.

Now, he continues, “we need a very strong and convinced position of the Commission on own resources. At the beginning there was little conviction, but I hope that Ursula von der Leyen is convinced that this is the way to go”. The French Minister of Economy Bruno Le Maire asked for a fund for the recovery from firepower, “at least”, of one thousand billion euros.

Now, underlines the former undersecretary for European Affairs, “the European Commission and President Ursula von der Leyen must tell us what we are talking about, knowing that they must be new resources. It is not that changing the chapters and anticipating what we should spend in seven years in the first two years will solve things. We don’t want a Juncker 2 plan, but a real recovery and transformation plan”.

“Multipliers require great faith, because the multiplier of 40, of which I have heard talk … well, even the loaves and fishes weren’t multiplied by 40!”

“We hope – Gozi continues – that the Commission’s seminar will not produce a Juncker 2, but a De Gasperi 1, which is not made up of advances, frontloading, multipliers that require great faith, because the multiplier of 40, of which I have heard talk … well, even the loaves and fishes weren’t multiplied by 40. It is good that the Commission is having an open debate today, but we would also like the figures. I don’t know if they will come, but I hope so.

The Commission, the Italian MEP elected in France stresses again, “must take a strong position and show that it is ready for political confrontation in the Council. It cannot be based on the lowest common denominator in the Council but, with the support of Parliament”, which is voting on a resolution calling for a 2 trillion billion fund, with own resources, “must make a clear choice and work in the Council to build an agreement on this. I hope it will come out of the work of the Commissioners. So far,” he stressed, “it has been difficult to understand in practice what the Commission wants.

The right split in three over the role of Italy in the EU

“It is split into three on a fundamental issue, on which for the first time we manage to have a majority ranging from Jaroslaw Kaczynski, leader of the Polish Pis, to Antonio Costa, socialist president of Portugal””

The Italian centre-right is about to split “in three” in the vote in the European Parliament on the resolution on the EU budget and the Recovery Plan, a “key” issue for the role of our country in Europe, where an “unprecedented” majority on this issue, ranging from the Polish nationalists of the Pis to the Portuguese socialists of Antonio Costa, emphasizes Gozi in view of the results of the vote that will arrive tomorrow, based on the positions expressed by Forza Italia, Fratelli di italia and Lega on the resolution (respectively should vote in favor, abstain and vote against).

“It is clear,” he says, “that the right is split in three and has no common idea of Europe. It is split into three on a fundamental issue, on which for the first time we manage to have a majority ranging from Jaroslaw Kaczynski, leader of the Polish Pis, to Antonio Costa, socialist president of Portugal”.

“The majority that we are achieving in the European Parliament – he points out – has no precedent and goes from the hard Polish conservative right, allied with Giorgia Meloni, to the more socialist part of the Social Democrats”.

“To split on such a key issue as the European Recovery Plan – adds Gozi – means not having a common position on a fundamental issue, which is the relationship of Italy with Europe and the role of Italy in Europe. It seems to me an obvious and very serious political fact for them”.

“I wonder – he continues – what is Forza Italia still doing in a so-called centre-right that is extreme right and little centre, in which the allies that Fi is chasing are confirmed as allies in positions far away from EPP itself”.

“Then – he warns – we will see the final vote, but I find it absurd that those who called for Eurobonds immediately today do not vote a resolution that takes an extraordinary step forward on the economic response of Europe. A resolution that explicitly indicates that the countries most affected must benefit more from this plan. In reality – he concludes – the Italian Right is schizophrenic about Europe, as on so many other issues”.

Difficult to convince Fontana and Zaia to say no to ESM

“How will Lega explain that it refuses 36 billions for the health system?”

It will be “difficult” to convince the presidents of the Lombardy and Veneto regions, Attilio Fontana and Luca Zaia, who fought “in the front line” the pandemic caused by the coronavirus Sars-Cov-2, to explain to the citizens of Lombardy and Veneto that the League wants to give up using the credit lines of the ESM, which will soon make available to Italy “36 billion euros” at “practically zero interest” to strengthen health services, says Gozi to Adnkronos.

“I’m not an expert on internal affairs of the League – he said – I’m very far from them. I wonder, however, how President Luca Zaia and Attilio Fontana could justify and explain to the Lombards and Venetians that the League, for ideological and totally unfounded reasons, refuses 36 billion euros in favor of Italian health care. I think it is very difficult to make this clear to Presidents of the Region who have been in the front line, who have fought, as the President of Emilia-Romagna Stefano Bonaccini fought”, the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We know very well – Gozi points out again – the enormous health effort that Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna and Veneto in particular made during the crisis. It seems to me very difficult that the League can explain to those who voted for it in those Regions that, for reasons that are not understood, or to follow Bagnai or Borghi, refuse funds for health care at practically zero interest and that are very useful to restore the capacity for health action, which was put under stress during this crisis,” he points out.

(Tog/AdnKronos) ISSN 2465 – 1222 14-MAG-20 17:33