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2021-06-25 at 15h56

Portuguese Prime Minister noted the EU’s solid response to the pandemic

The Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa at the press conference following the last European Council of the Portuguese Presidency of the EU, Brussels, 25 June 2021

The Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa noted the EU’s solid response to the pandemic, namely the Next Generation EU reached during the Portuguese Presidency of the EU.

These were "six months of hard work to materialize what was one of the EU’s most solid responses to this crisis", said António Costa at the press conference following the last European Council of the Portuguese Presidency of the EU’s semester, together with the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, and the President of the European Council, Charles Michel.

The Portuguese Prime Minister also noted the fact that the European Commission "went to the markets with good results, which showed that the cost of issuing he debt" was "much lower than if it had been done by each of the Member States".

Among the agreements and measures reached during the Portuguese Presidency, António Costa highlighted the option of maintaining "a budget policy in support of countering the crisis", thereby ensuring "the transition to an economic recovery, maintaining our public finances’ sustainability". A recovery that, as he stated, "must be fair", so priority was given to the European Pillar of Social Rights, signalled by "the signature of a tripartite commitment" at the Porto Social Summit.

In the field of Justice, António Costa noted the approval of the directive on fiscal transparency (Country-by-country reporting) under the framework of a single market within the EU.

Green recovery and digital recovery

Green recovery was another of the items on the Portuguese Presidency’s agenda, where we highlight the approval of the European Climate Law which "allows us to be the first continent to have a global commitment to being carbon neutral in 2050. This paves the way for the Commission to present the Fit for 55 Package on 14 July in order to ensure we cut 55% of CO2 emissions, net, by 2030".

Under the digital recovery, António Costa referred to the approval in 62 days of "the digital certificate, which will allow us to resume circulation within the EU in a safe and less bureaucratic manner, also allowing for interconnection between the administrations of all Member States".

Another measure signalled by the Portuguese Prime Minister was the submarine fibre optic cable linking Europe and Latin America (cable and Ellalink), as this is an "infrastructure of the utmost importance", capable of linking regions with strong economic weight.

Europe’s Strategic Autonomy

António Costa also recalled the priority the Portuguese Presidency of the European Union lent to "the affirmation of Europe’s strategic autonomy", together with "a clear affirmation to the world" through new partnerships with regions such as the Indo-Pacific Asia, a good example of which is the summit joining EU leaders and the Indian Prime Minister in Porto. According to the Portuguese Prime Minister, this meeting "unlocked negotiations on the trade agreement, the investment agreement, and opened up new areas of cooperation with India: space, digital and climate".

Migration Policy

On the migration policy, António Costa underlined the fact that "the directive that allows us to create legal migration for human resources, which Europe needs and are fundamental for our development" was drafted during the Portuguese Presidency.


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