On 17 March at 17:00, the members of the European Council will follow up, by video conference, on the EU actions responding to the COVID-19 outbreak.
President Charles Michel said:
Containing the spread of the virus, providing sufficient medical equipment, boosting research and limiting the economic fallout is key
This will be the second meeting of this sort. On 10 March, the members of the European Council discussed, by video conference, how to coordinate EU efforts.
Member states expressed sympathy with Italy and other member states which have been severely affected. They stressed the need for a joint European approach and close coordination with the European Commission. They agreed that health ministers and interior ministers should consult with one another on a daily basis to ensure proper coordination of and direction for common European guidance.
At the press conference following the meeting, President Michel presented four priorities which the leaders had identified:
- limiting the spread of the virus
- the provision of medical equipment, with a particular focus on masks and respirators
- promoting research, including research into a vaccine
- tackling socio-economic consequences