LISBON, Jan. 11 (Xinhua) -- Visiting Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Monday called for European COVID-19 recovery funds to be made available to the European Union (EU) member states "as soon as possible."
"We spent several nights awake in July, the (European) Council lasted five days, and it was a great European success, a great step forward for the EU to guarantee loans and grants to the states in need," Mitsotakis was quoted by the Portuguese Lusa News Agency as saying.
Greece is set to receive 32 billion euros (39 billion U.S. dollars) from the EU Recovery Fund, and the figure for Portugal is similar, he said. "I do not want there to be any delay in the disbursement of these funds," he told reporters.
"It has not been and will not be easy, there are some countries hit by the second, even third wave of the pandemic, and of course this creates economic difficulties, not all countries move at the same speed," Mitsotakis said.
Portugal took over the rotating six-month Presidency of the European Council on Jan. 1, 2021.
Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa said that it is one of the Portuguese EU Presidency's top priorities to distribute the first batch of the 750-billion-euro Recovery Fund among the 27 EU member states as quickly as possible. (1 euro = 1.22 U.S. dollars)
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