Macron on EU’s ‘moment of truth’, China revises figures upwards

Emmanuel Macron has warned that the EU could unravel unless it embraces financial solidarity over the coronavirus.

In an interview with the Financial Times (paywall), the French president says EU member states have “no choice” but to set up a joint recovery fund. France has been pushing for a fund with common debt sharing according to countries’ needs — an idea opposed by Germany and the Netherlands.

The EU faces a “moment of truth” in deciding whether it is more than just a single economic market — otherwise the lack of solidarity will fuel populist anger in the south and kill off the EU as a political project, Macron argues.

In other developments:

China has denied a “cover-up” after the number of deaths from coronavirus were revised sharply upwards. In Wuhan alone, the figure has shot up by 50%. It brings the nationwide total to 4,632.

Donald Trump has given US state governors a road map for economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, laying out a gradual approach to restoring activity.

The UK government will extend its coronavirus lockdown for at least three more weeks.

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa also officially extended his country’s lockdown until early May.

Swedish governmentgranted special powers to curb coronavirus outbreak

A number of European countries have laid out plans to ease their containment measures.

Air pollution in European cities has plummeted due to the coronavirus pandemic.


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