Spain to create more than 800,000 jobs in 3 years with EU funds: PM

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MADRID, Oct 7 : Spain will increase state investment spending by 27 billion euros ($31.74 billion) in 2021 thanks to emergency European Union funds for recovery from the coronavirus crisis, the prime minister said on Wednesday.

Between 2021 and 2023, the government will spend 72 billion euros from the EU funds and an additional 800,000 jobs will be created, Pedro Sanchez added during an address on economic plans in front of a screen showing slogans including “Resistance” and “Advance.”

“It’s not just about recovering the GDP that the pandemic took from us, it’s about growing in a different way, with a more robust, fairer and more sustainable way of growing,” Sanchez said in the televised speech.

Spain is due to receive 140 billion euros until 2026 from the EU fund: 77 billion euros in grants and the rest in loans.

On Tuesday, Spain forecast a worse-than-feared economic contraction this year of 11.2% but said there would be a rebound in 2021 with growth of 7.2%.

With the European funds fully disbursed, the economy could grow more, as much as 9.8%, next year, according to the Economy Ministry.

But the Socialist Sanchez’s coalition government needs to gather a majority in parliament to pass the new budget, a challenge in a fragmented assembly unable to approve a new full-year budget since 2016.

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