Fidesz MP and state secretary Lazar Janos told a local radio station in his home town of Hodmezovasarhely today that he took over the National Development Authority in August in order to prevent Hungary from missing out on substantial EU funds.
According to Lazar 97-98 per cent of the HUF 8.2 trillion (USD 3.9 billion) of EU funds to which Hungary was entitled for the current seven year period has been allocated. Of this some HUF 5 trillion (USD 2.1 billion) has already been paid out – 1.7 billion (USD 800 million) in 2013 alone.
On 17 December parliament authorized the government to establish a set of government institutions in accordance with the country’s new development policies. By government decree the National Development Authority ceases to exist on 1 January and many of its functions transfer to the Office of the Prime Minister, including preliminary assessment of projects and public procurement oversight. Henceforth each ministry will be responsible for organizing and overseeing EU funded projects within its respective portfolio with the Office of the Prime Minister coordinating the activities of the various agencies.
Of the 650 experts employed by the National Development Authority, 350 are to be transferred to the various ministries and 300 are to be employed henceforth by the Office of the Prime Minister. The new central coordinating office will be responsible for administrating the balance of programs from the 2007-2013 EU budgetary period and for planning and overseeing the investment of some HUF 7.4 trillion (USD 3.4 billion) in EU funds allocated to Hungary for the 2014-2020 budgetary period.
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