EU leaders discuss pandemic recovery plan: What’s at stake?

The European Union is at a crossroads, with member states looking for leadership and cash to bolster economies that have been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns. Leaders are in Brussels for their first face-to-face meeting in months. Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel is chairing the summit, and she wants to persuade the bloc’s richer nations to allow grants for countries like Italy, Spain and Portugal to help them overcome the worst of the pandemic. But those richer members, including Austria, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands, want to see tightly-controlled loans instead, and all eyes are on Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who is taking a tough stance. Merkel has admitted that finding a compromise will be difficult.