Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

21.59 9 Apr 2020


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Eurozone finance ministers have reached a deal on a rescue package for member states to deal with the impact of the coronavirus crisis.

Member states earlier this week failed to reach agreement on the proposals - which will amount to up to €500bn - during a marathon teleconference.

However, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe confirmed a deal has now been done following another attempt this evening.

He said supports will be available to "governments, employers and citizens".

He acknowledged it took a "few hours to agree, but only because this really matters".

According to The Financial Times, the deal will include the European Commission's 'SURE' unemployment insurance scheme and a boost in lending capacity for the European Central Bank.

Earlier disagreements over the plan are said to have revolved around the proposed use of a debt instrument known as 'eurobonds' - a proposal backed by Ireland, Italy and a number of other member states.

Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra - who had led opposition to eurobonds - said the member states had now reached a "good conclusion".

However, he stressed that his country remained opposed to eurobonds - saying his government didn't believe they would "help Europa or [Netherlands] on the long-term".

On the deal agreed, Mr Hoeskstra said: "The [European Stability Mechanism] can provide financial help to countries without conditions for medical expenses.

"It will also available for economic support, but with conditions. That's fair and reasonable."

Main image: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe. Picture by: Brian Lawless/PA Wire/PA Images

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