Brussels, Belgium– Following the crisis created by the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), MEP Samira Rafaela has taken several actions to protect and defend the interests of the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs), including our islands, the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
In her contact with the European Commission, she has advocated for solidarity with the OCTs and asked for help with the application for the existing funds. In addition, Rafaela asked for a proposal for exceptional support for the OCTs in this crisis. The European Commission has currently indicated that limited use can be made of the European Development Fund.
In this, Samira Rafaela is acting jointly with her French colleague MEP Stéphane Bijoux, with whom she previously founded a Friendship Group for the OCTs. Together they have called on the European Commission to open up existing European funds to the OCTs. So, also for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
However, this will not be enough to tackle the current crisis. When the European Parliament will gather to debate and vote on a resolution regarding the Corona crisis, Samira Rafaela will work to ensure that the OCTs are included and will call for improved financing.
Samira Rafaela: “The COVID-19 crisis is hitting all corners of the world and therefore all parts of our Kingdom. The consequences for the world economy are almost without precedent. We must make every effort to ensure that we remain healthy and to safeguard our economy, including that of the OCTs, in the short and long term. I will continue to work hard for that. ”