Council reaches political agreement on SURE
Last Friday 15 May, the Council of the EU reached a political agreement on SURE, a new instrument for temporary ‘Support to mitigate Unemployment Risks in an Emergency’. As reported here on EU Law Live, the SURE initiative is part of the EU’s emergency support package to tackle the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis.
SURE is expected to provide temporary support of up to 100 billion euros in loans under favourable terms to Member States requesting financial assistance. The objective of the instrument is to ensure that Member States can easily and cheaply finance their partial unemployment/short-term work schemes that have been heavily used during the lockdowns, and which have led to sudden and severe increases of national public expenditure, as from 1 February 2020. While all Member States will be able to make use of the instrument, SURE will act as a particularly important safety net for workers in the hardest-hit economies.
SURE is one of the three safety nets, worth 540 billion euros, for jobs and workers, businesses and Member States, agreed by the Eurogroup on 9 April 2020. EU leaders endorsed the agreement on 23 April and called for the package to be operational by 1 June 2020.
The regulation will now need to be formally adopted by the Council, by written procedure, and it is expected that it will be adopted by 19 May. SURE will become available after all the Member States have provided their guarantees. Formally, the financial assistance will be granted by a decision adopted by the Council on a proposal from the Commission. In principle, the instrument will be operational until 31 December 2022.
For more information, read the Council’s press release.