Lithuanian president expects MPs to ratify EU deal on recovery fund in fall session

  • 2020-07-22
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - President Gitanas Nauseda expects that EU leaders' agreement on a post-coronavirus recovery package will receive approval from across the political spectrum in Lithuania and will be ratified by the parliament during its fall session.     

"The deal reached in Brussels early on Tuesday will have to be ratified by the Seimas. The president expects this to happen later this year, during the fall session," Antanas Bubnelis, Nauseda's spokesman, told BNS.  

"The president expects that all parliamentary parties will unanimously approve the agreement," he added.   

Discussions on the economic recovery fund have now moved to the Seimas.

The parliament's Committee on European Affairs discussed the matter on Wednesday.

Its chairman, Gediminas Kirkilas of the Social Democratic Labor Party, predicts that Lithuanian parliamentarians will approve the deal on the recovery package unanimously. 

"It would be very strange if we did not ratify. It means additional funding, and it is important for us to resolve this issue as soon as possible," he told BNS. 

Conservative MP Zygimantas Pavilionis, the committee's vice-chairman, told BNS that discussions in Lithuania will focus on how to use borrowed funds that will have to be repaid in the future. 

The national parliaments of EU member states will have to decide in the coming months whether to allow the European Commission to borrow 750 billion euros on the international markets to finance the recovery plan.

The package comprises 390 billion euros in grants and 360 billion euros in loans to countries hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Lithuania will be eligible for 2.4 billion euros in grants and up to 3 billion euros in loans from the fund. 

EU leaders also endorsed the bloc's 2021-2027 budget worth over 1 trillion euros. It does not need to be ratified by the Lithuanian parliament.