Watch: “Malta expects a fair and just deal” – Parliamentary Secretary Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi

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“Malta expects a fair and just deal on the Multiannual Financial Framework and the Recovery Fund, which addresses Malta’s concerns”. This was stated by Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi at the General Affairs Meeting, in which Ministers for European Affairs met via videoconference.

The meeting was convened to make the final preparations for the European Council meeting, to be held between Friday 17th and Saturday 18th July. The European Council meeting is aimed at securing agreement between member states on the Multi-Annual Financial Framework 2021-2027, and on the recovery plan to respond to the COVID-19 crisis, based on the recent proposal by the European Council President. 

Parliamentary Secretary Zrinzo Azzopardi remarked that, in the last years, Malta has experienced strong economic growth and a substantial reduction in unemployment rates. Malta should not be penalised for such developments with regard to the recovery fund, but it should rather act as a catalyst for further growth. Additionally, while the needs of islands’ states have been taken into account in the latest proposals, other issues remain unresolved.

On the financing aspect, the Parliamentary Secretary emphasised that Malta has long-standing sensitivities on proposed elements of this discussion. A discussion thereon at this stage could potentially impact the timely conclusion of these negotiations.

Parliamentary Secretary Zrinzo Azzopardi concluded by stating that Malta, faced by all these challenges, has been and will always remain positive, and ready to make compromises. However, a fair and just deal is a must.