The outbreak of the Covid-19 presents a major challenge to the EU, since all Member States are at the frontline in countering this pandemic. Therefore, the EU is focusing on responsibility and solidarity between its Member States through a collective and coordinated action plan that targets the containment of the virus, helping patients, and counter the economic fallout.

On 13 March 2020, the European Commission proposed the establishment of the Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative (CRII) to direct €37 billion under Cohesion policy to the fight against the Coronavirus crisis. The Commission’s proposal for a CRII has been adopted by both the European Parliament and the Coucil of the EU.

The funding through the CRII will focus on (i) Corona-relevant health expenditure in any part of the Member States, such as hospital equipment, ventilators, and masks; (ii) support to SMEs working capital; and (iii) short-term employment schemes.

The outbreak of the coronavirus has created an exceptional situation which needs to be addressed with specific measures to support and protect Member States’ economies, companies and workers. The CRII is only one of the measures being considered at EU level to assist Member States in the fight against this virus and its consequences.