Italy’s prime minister, Giuseppe Conte, was in Madrid yesterday


Italy’s prime minister, Giuseppe Conte, was in Madrid yesterday for a meeting with his Spanish counterpart, Pedro Sánchez to discuss their countries’ joint strategy for an upcoming summit on the European Union’s coronavirus recovery fund.

Spain and Italy, the two European countries to be hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, are joining forces against the so-called “frugal” countries, Austria, the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark, which oppose the idea of a €750 billion fund, of which €500 billion would be non-recoverable grants and the rest made up of loans.

Sánchez and Conte have shared interests, as their countries stand to benefit the most from the fund, according to Italian and Spanish sources who added that Germany and France back the recovery fund.