The European Union is based on solidarity. We are being told this story at every European election. However, when the coronavirus crisis emerged there was no solidarity. Italy was not helped by the EU. It was helped by China, by Russia and by Cuba and unfortunately, not at all by the European Union. They feel abandoned.
The COVID-19 outbreak constituted a serious challenge on Europe's readiness for a crisis. But the claim that "EU has done nothing" is false. The European Commission has approved a €50 million Italian aid scheme to support the production and supply of medical devices, as well as to help Italy provide the necessary medical treatment to those infected. On the 13th of March, the EU proposed a Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative, envisaging EUR 835 million for Italy. On the 26th of March 26, the European Parliament unanimously approved the initiative. The European Central Bank announced a 750 billion euro ($820 billion) asset purchase program in an effort to help mitigate the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, as the death toll in Europe continues to rise. As part of the program, investors will purchase Italian securities to help the country counter the serious risks of the coronavirus. Individual EU members have also provided assistance to Italy specifically, including access to a hundred intensive care beds (Austria and Germany), 500 mobile medical units (Greece), 2.5 million masks (Austria and France), 30,000 protective suits (Czech Republic and France), 300 ventilators (Germany), as well as 50 medicalpersonnel (Poland, Romania, and non-member Norway). On the 26th of April Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said that a recovery fund to help EU countries weather the coronavirus’ economic impact should be worth €1.5 trillion and be available by mid-September. Read similar cases claiming that Italy is alone defending itself from coronavirus, without any help from hypocritical EU and that the EU left Italy face to face with an invisible and terrible enemy.