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Tuesday, 9 February 2021 - Brussels Revised edition

Establishing the Recovery and Resilience Facility (debate)

  Esteban González Pons (PPE). – Madam President, we are suffering the second, the third, and maybe soon, the fourth wave of the virus. That also means a second, a third and maybe a fourth wave of the economic crisis. This recovery package was designed only for the first wave. I warn this Parliament: Member States will come for more European money.

There are three things we need to clarify right now. First, national parliaments must immediately ratify the decision on own resources: in other words, there will be no European money without new resources. Second, Parliament must be involved in the decision—making process from beginning to end, and our opinion must be taken into account by the Commission. Third, Parliament must also be involved in the evaluation of the 27 national plans on an equal footing with the Council. National governments have a very bad habit of quickly being in Brussels when they are ask for money, but when it is about transparency and accountability, they turn a blind eye.

This is why, Madam President, I ask you, please, to formally extend an invitation to the Heads of Government of the 27 to come to this Parliament and to present their national plans here, which I must insist are possible because of the generosity of Europeans. We are ready to deliver EUR 750 billion, but for the sake of transparency and decency, don’t do this with the lights off and in the backyard of democracy.

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