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EU Commission to propose mix of grants and loans for recovery next week

FILE PHOTO: European Union flags fly outside the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, February 19, 2020. Picture taken February 19, 2020 REUTERS/Yves Herman/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Commission will not copy and paste a Franco-German proposal when it presents its own recovery fund idea next week and will include a mix of grants and loans, rather than just grants as suggested by Paris and Berlin, its spokesman said.

France and Germany proposed on Monday a 500 billion euro ($543 billion) Recovery Fund that would offer grants to European Union regions and sectors hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic, to help them without driving up their debt levels.

“In our proposal there would be a balance of grants and loans,” Commission spokesman Eric Mamer told a regular briefing. “We will see what the balance is when we come out with our proposal next week.”

Reporting by Jan Strupczewski; Editing by Catherine Evans