Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi participated in a meeting with European affairs ministers. This meeting was held as a means of preparation for the upcoming European Council, at which all EU heads of state will be participating.
This meeting focused primarily on the recovery fund, the proposals for which were issued following COVID-19 and the European budget for the upcoming seven years.
The parliamentary secretary spoke about the need for a timely agreement on the recovery fund and the budget, in order to send a clear message to enterprises and European citizens. This was stated while noting that the proposals put forward by the Commission include various positive elements as well as other elements which need to be discussed further in relation to both the European budget as well as the recovery fund.
Parliamentary Secretary Zrinzo Azzopardi also noted that the COVID-19 has underlined the already existing struggles brought about by Malta’s permanent geographical disadvantages, which need to be adequately addressed in the negotiations.
The ministers were informed by EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier about the state of negotiations between the European Union and United Kingdom.
Furthermore, the upcoming Presidency trio of the Council of Ministers comprising Germany, Portugal and Slovenia presented their programme jointly for the 18 months of the Council, which will take place between the 1st of July 2020 and the 31st of December 2021.