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Tuesday, 9 February 2021 - Brussels Provisional edition

Establishing the Recovery and Resilience Facility (debate)

  Frances Fitzgerald, rapporteur for the opinion of the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality. – Madam President, this is one of the largest ever EU funding programmes, a programme that will be crucial in repairing the economic devastation we’ve suffered. The leadership shown from the Commission in supporting Member States economically has been unprecedented in both its scale and speed.

But it’s not about repairing only, it’s about looking to the future. We need to constantly reinforce the message we want to build back better. That must be based on the key pillars of green, digital, but crucially, equality. I’m glad to see that the final agreement on the RRF has recognised the gender dimension of the COVID crisis and the differential impact that the crisis has had on women.

Parliament wanted to go further. Member States must now take this opportunity to enshrine gender equality targets in their national recovery plans. We must build back better by investing in the green economy, care infrastructure, digital literacy, sustainable finance for SMEs and invest in our cities, such as Dublin, to make them more liveable. Member States must reflect this in their national recovery plans, and the Commission has a responsibility to ensure that governments build back better. Let us use the crisis as an opportunity to build a green, digital and more inclusive economy. This is not just a social imperative, but...

(The President cut off the speaker)

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