The money tap is about to be turned on after European finance ministers greenlit the COVID-19 recovery plans of a dozen nations, marking a milestone in the bloc's recovery from the pandemic and in its experiment with financing joint debt.
Italy and Spain, which are top beneficiaries of the program in terms of overall funding, were among the first batch of approvals.
Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Latvia, Luxembourg, Portugal and Slovakia also received the final nod. These countries can now start signing grant and loan agreements for up to 13 percent pre-financing.
EU Commissioner for Economics Paolo Gentiloni said the first "pre-financing disbursements" could come in the next few weeks.