EU economics chief: 1.5 trillion euros in aid could be needed to tackle coronavirus

European Economic Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni speaks during a news conference on public finances in EU states at European Union Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium February 26, 2020. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

BERLIN (Reuters) - The European Union’s Economics Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni told German magazine Der Spiegel that aid worth around 1.5 trillion euros ($1.63 trillion) could be needed to tackle the coronavirus crisis.

“The Eurogroup has now made proposals for aid worth more than 500 billion euros to finance healthcare and short-time work and to help small and medium-sized companies. That leaves at least one trillion euros. This is roughly the amount we need to be dealing with now.”

He said the funds could be raised via the EU’s next multi-annual budget.

Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Riham Alkousaa