Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a video conference call that the pandemic-induced economic crisis requires a more ambitious approach to the EU budget, said Polish government’s press spokesman Piotr Muller during.a briefing with journalists.
Morawiecki spoke to Merkel shortly before a European Council summit that is expected to be held on video conference.
The summit is expected to focus on a recovery fund to help Europe survive the economic crisis brought on the by the coronavirus pandemic. Member states have already agreed to a €540-billion package earlier this month.
The EU’s seven-year budget will also be a topic, with member states having haggled over the specifics of the budget already before the pandemic outbreak.
Another top issue will be the issue of bailing out an increasingly insolvent Italy, with concerns that other EU countries may soon follow.
Unanimous stance of V4 countries
After speaking to Merkel, Morawiecki held a coordinating call with his Visegrad Four allies of Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia.
The Polish Chancellery of the Prime Minister posted short clip of the talks between Morawiecki, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Slovak Prime Minister Igor Matovic and Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis and their ministers.
— Kancelaria Premiera (@PremierRP) April 22, 2020
In both meetings, Morawiecki stressed that the EU needs to work for enlarging the EU budget in order to save jobs.
This requires new sources of financing be made available for the EU. Morawiecki has in the past argued for EU-wide taxes that would provide the European Commission with a larger revenue base.
The V4 group are all united in seeking a bigger EU budget to help combat the effects of the pandemic and also want these funds to be available on a more flexible basis.