We must act now in order to “get Europe back on course for growth, address the serious economic damage, and of course to learn from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Chancellor Angela Merkel before her meeting with Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez.

Investing in the future

At the same time, we must invest in the future, in particular in digitalisation and climate action, said Chancellor Merkel. This will be the crucial factor in “whether we will be economically successful or not” over the next few years.

With a view to the Special European Council meeting on Friday and Saturday, the Chancellor stressed that there are still very divergent views among EU member states. The German side will be traveling to Brussels “with a certain readiness to compromise,” she reported, but pointed out that one thing is painfully obvious: “Time is short.”

The Special European Council meeting on 17 and 18 July is to focus on the Multiannual Financial Framework and the recovery instrument. It is the first time the European Council has met in person in Brussels since February.