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Germany and France proposed a 500 billion euro European Union recovery fund



Germany and France proposed a 500 billion euro European Union recovery fund

Merkel said the crisis threatened EU cohesion. The initiative by the two top European economies aims to help reach consensus among 27 EU member states, he added.

“To support a sustainable recovery that restores and promotes growth in the EU, Germany and France support an ambitious, temporary and targeted Recovery Fund,” Merkel said, speaking at a video press conference.

Europe’s ability to recover from the worst economic shocks that have occurred since the Great Depression has been threatened by reopening old political wounds.
Divisions between member states has slowed the progress of the recovery fund which the European Commission hopes will raise at least € 1 trillion ($ 1.1 trillion) to rebuild the regional economy.

Charles Michel, president of the European Council of European Union national leaders, has called for the package to start operating on June 1. But the Commission failed on May 6 to complete the proposal.

Differences as to whether the funds should provide loans or grants to the hardest hit countries like Italy and Spain hamper progress. Grants, or direct money transfers, would imply a level of debt sharing that has long been opposed by countries such as the Netherlands, Austria and Germany.

But Merkel and Macron confirm that under their proposal, the European Commission will borrow money to boost the EU economy and channel funds through the EU budget to the hardest hit regions and sectors.

“Given the extraordinary nature of the Covid-19 pandemic challenges to economies throughout the EU, France and Germany are proposing to allow the European Commission to finance the recovery support by borrowing on markets on behalf of the EU,” he added.

Macron said the EU recovery fund would enjoy the support of the European Central Bank. While funds must be paid back from time to time, the burden will not only fall on those who need help the most.

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“This 500 billion euros must be paid off,” Macron said, but “not by the beneficiaries,” he added.

The European Union’s economy will shrink by a record 7.5% this year, the European Commission warned earlier this month, and the decline could be faster in 19 countries that use the euro.

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This is a much steeper decline than the region suffered after the 2008 global financial crisis, and a more pessimistic view than predicted by International Monetary Fund in April.

Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, welcomed “constructive proposals made by France and Germany.”

European Union Council President Michel called it “a step in the right direction” for the EU.

“I welcome the efforts of Germany and France to find common ground in the recovery fund,” tweeted Michel. “I call on all 27 member states to work in a spirit of compromise as soon as the European Commission submits a proposal.”

European Union officials have warned that the pain could be worse than expected if the pandemic is more severe and durable than currently thought.

EU leaders have signed direct rescue measures worth at least € 500 billion ($ 538 billion), a package that includes wage subsidies aimed at preventing mass layoffs, as well as loans for business.

– Stephanie Halasz, Pierre Buet, Nada Bashir, Rob North and Charles Riley contributed reporting.

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Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.



Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.

Method Media Bermuda will present the documentary FABRIC: Portuguese History in Bermuda on Thursday, December 29 at the Underwater Research Institute of Bermuda.

A spokesperson said: “Method Media is proud to bring Bermuda Fabric: Portugal History to Bermuda for its 5th and 6th showing at the Bermuda Underwater Observatory. In November and December 2019, Cloth: A Portuguese Story in Bermuda had four sold-out screenings. Now that Bermuda has reopened after the pandemic, it’s time to bring the film back for at least two screenings.

“There are tickets For $ 20 – sessions at 15:30 and 18:00. Both screenings will be followed by a short Q&A session.

Director and producer Milton Raboso says, “FABRIC is a definitive account of the Portuguese community in Bermuda and its 151 years of history, but it also places Bermuda, Acors and Portugal in the world history and the events that have fueled those 151 years.

“It took more than 10 years to implement FABRIC. The film was supported by the Minister of Culture, the Government of the Azores and private donors.

Bermuda Media Method [MMB] Created in 2011 by producer Milton Raposo. MMB has created content for a wide range of clients: Bermuda’s new hospital renovation, reinsurance, travel campaigns, international sports and more. MMB pays special attention to artistic, cultural and historical content.

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Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.



Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.

Maestro Filipe Cunha, Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Braga, has been invited to conduct the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra, as announced today.

According to a statement sent by O MINHO, “he will be the first Portuguese conductor to conduct this orchestra in its entire history.”

In addition to this orchestra, the maestro will also work with the Lyceo Mozarteum de la Habana Symphony Orchestra.

The concerts will take place on 4 and 12 March 2023 at the National Theater of Cuba in Havana.

In the words of the maestro, quoted in the statement, “these will be very beautiful concerts with difficult but very complex pieces” and therefore he feels “very motivated”.

From the very beginning, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 will be performed by an Italian pianist (Luigi Borzillo), whom the maestro wants to bring to Portugal later this year. In the same concert, Mendelshon’s First Symphony will be performed.

Then, at the second concert, in the company of the Mexican clarinetist Angel Zedillo, he will perform the Louis Sfora Concerto No. 2. In this concert, the maestro also conducts Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony.

“This is an international recognition of my work. An invitation that I accept with humility and great responsibility. I was surprised to learn that I would be the first Portuguese member of the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra. This is a very great honor,” the maestro said in a statement.

“I take with me the name of the city of Braga and Portugal with all the responsibility that goes with it, and I hope to do a good job there, leaving a good image and putting on great concerts. These will be very special concerts because, in addition to performing pieces that I love, especially Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, I will be directing two wonderful soloists who are also my friends. It will be very beautiful,” concludes Filipe Cunha.

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