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IN SHORT

Bureaucracy may block EU funding

THE CABINET office issued a report stating that administrative complexity and insufficient human resources at ministries are a barrier to drawing funds from EU sources, the Hospodárske noviny business daily reported.

Two ministries have failed to make use of EU funding (the Economy Ministry and the Labour Ministry), according to the cabinet report. It states that both ministries are in danger of not fulfilling their obligations.

Martin Urmanič, spokesman for Deputy Prime Minister Pál Csáky, warned that if conditions are not met within the time given to use the funding, Slovakia will have to return the money to the EU budget.

The two ministries disagree, saying that the report's authors have no experience with EU funding. They argue that they have until the end of 2006 to sign contracts connected to EU funding and that financing can continue until the end of 2008.

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