As Cabinet Minister Lázár announces plans for early EU grant applications, the leading left-wing daily fears that the hasty procedure will result in a mindless waste of resources.
On Thursday, János Lázár, the Cabinet Minister in charge of the Prime Minister’s office, said that the government plans to announce applications by 2017 for the 12,000 billion Forint fund available for Hungary in the 2014-2020 EU financial framework. Mr Lázár claimed that through early application, Hungary could make sure that all available EU funds are spent.
In Népszabadság, Gábor G. Varga welcomes the planned increase in the efficiency of EU fund spending, but fears that hasty decision-making may result in mindless spending. The left-wing columnist recalls that the Socialist-Liberal government in power until 2010 was very slow to distribute the available EU funds, and thus the Fidesz government had to hastily announce several large-scale applications for EU money before the end of the previous budget cycle in 2014. Varga thinks that some of this hasty spending resulted in useless projects which did not contribute to growth or job creation. If the government again spends the resources in this way, transparent decision making cannot be guaranteed and EU funds may again be squandered or end up in the economic hinterland of the Fidesz government, Varga fears.