Watch: EU agreement on COVID-19 stimulus fund far off

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Discussions are still underway between EU leaders to seek to bridge their considerable differences over the bloc’s long-term budget and the COVID-19 recovery plan.

After 16 hours of negotiations, the EU leaders including Malta’s Prime Minister Robert Abela have resumed discussions today at 11 am but no progress has been made so far.

Malta aligned itself with the so-called Friends of Cohesion, which argued that the cohesion funds aiming to help less-developed EU regions catch up should be left untouched. But at the other end were the Frugal Four – Austria, Denmark, the Netherlands and Sweden – net contributors who seek to keep the budget as lean as possible.

With the coronavirus pandemic dealing many European economies their worst economic shock since World War Two, leaders say they must agree on a €750 billion recovery fund and a new 1 trillion euro EU budget.