Austria calls for the end of state aid rules in the EU.

Austria, one of those self-described ‘frugals’ within the bloc, has called to finish state aid rules in preventing countries from giving an unfair advantage to companies aimed, in happier times. This would provide the ability to freely implement a plan to spend roughly a tenth of the economic outcome of last year on keeping its economy ticking over to ministers in Vienna.

The Alpine republic eventually backed a rescue package for member nations hardest hit by the epidemic while opposing the concept of debt that was mutualised, or’ coronabonds’, to finance it.

Austrian Finance Minister Gernot Bluemel called for the EU to let his nation “show solidarity with our very own companies”.

He explained: “This solidarity cannot be a one-way street.

It comes as Austria took its first step in relaxing its month-old restrictions last Tuesday by allowing DIY stores, garden centres and smaller stores reopen.

Other shops and hairdressers must follow May 1 and Austrian cultural spaces including libraries and museums, will reopen from mid-May within a gradual loosening of the coronavirus lockdown.

Vice-Chancellor Werner Kogler said: “The conservative-led authorities said the action it required early in the outbreak and also the fact infections are increasing by less than one per cent a day make it possible to reopen sections of the economy, but it is going to make adjustments if infections accelerate.

“By mid-May, it’ll be possible for demonstration venues in the cultural and artistic area, certainly museums to reopen.”

The authorities said it would review the situation and determine what type of cultural events can be permitted from early July, for example, cash-strapped theatre, Lunacek said.

For theatres, many variables were being contemplated on how they may reopen safely.

Junior minister for culture and art Ulrike Lunacek stated: “What happens on point? People on stage?

“And at the theatre, there’s frequently a lot of action. Perhaps there is a struggle or maybe a love scene. That will not be possible, probably.”

EU POLITICS

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