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ECB announces plans for €750bn coronavirus programme

The European Central Bank (ECB) has unveiled an emergency package to soften the harsh effects of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy.

The new measures put in place will buy government and company debt across the eurozone, including that of struggling Greece and Italy.

The response comes after an emergency meeting was held with its rate-setting committee on Wednesday night, with a focus on developing strategies to combat the downturn caused by the spreading pandemic.

President of the ECB, Christine Lagarde, tweeted “there are no limits” to its commitment to the euro.

The European Central Bank has named the strategy the Pandemic Emergency Purchase Programme. The implementation has come just six days after the ECB revealed plans that failed to calm markets, adding extra pressure on the bank to do more in assisting Europe’s economies.

The asset purchasing scheme will be temporary and be concluded once the ECB “judges that the coronavirus Covid-19 crisis phase is over, but in any case not before the end of the year”, it said in a statement.

“The governing council of the ECB is committed to playing its role in supporting all citizens of the euro area through this extremely challenging time,” it said in a statement. “The governing council will do everything necessary within its mandate.”