MADRID (Reuters) – Spain has officially asked the European Union for the first instalment of 10 billion euros ($11.5 billion) of recovery funds, becoming the first member state to do so, the Budget Ministry said on Friday.

The southern European nation received a downpayment of 9 billion euros in August out of a total of 19 billion euros Spanish Economy Minister Nadia Calvino said the country would receive in 2021.

The full tranche of funds for 2021 will be paid out within two months if the European Commission finds that the Spanish government has reached a total of 52 mutually agreed milestones that include climate change mitigation goals, gender pay equality and digitalisation strategies.

Spain is due to receive 140 billion euros from the EU recovery funds over three years, approximately half in grants and the other half in loans. The country is one of the main recipients of these funds.

($1 = 0.8734 euros)

(Reporting by Inti Landauro and Belén Carreño; Editing by Hugh Lawson)