NEWS IN SHORT

President vetoes indirect amendments

SLOVAK President Ivan Gašparovič refused to sign an amendment to the law on securities because it involved some indirect amendments to other subject areas which he did not believe were in accordance with the principles of safety, predictability and comprehensibility of the law, the SITA newswire reported.

SLOVAK President Ivan Gašparovič refused to sign an amendment to the law on securities because it involved some indirect amendments to other subject areas which he did not believe were in accordance with the principles of safety, predictability and comprehensibility of the law, the SITA newswire reported.

The indirect amendments were incorporated into the law at the last moment at the request of the ruling coalition. One would have modified the Act on the Environmental Fund (EF), as the coalition wanted to allow the environment minister, Ján Chrbet, to grant money to any organisation created by the ministry without any of the written documents usually required for ministry projects. Other applicants for state subventions from the EF would have had to keep filing their requests with all the documents as before. The president considered this proposed new rule ‘problematic’.

Gašparovič also did not approve an indirect amendment to the Act on Waste which was promised by Prime Minister Robert Fico to steelmaker US Steel Košice. The amendment would have lowered its payments into a reserve fund intended to finance future liquidation of waste dumps. The amendment suggested lowering the payments by half. The administrator of a dump would be required to create a reserve of only 50 percent of the overall costs of the shutdown, rehabilitation and monitoring of the dump. The president said the amendment lacked answers to the questions of whom, when and how the remaining 50 percent would be paid.

An amendment to the Securities Act would have allowed owners of securities obtained during Slovakia’s coupon privatisation who no longer wanted them to transfer them to the National Property Fund. This proposal came as a reaction to the fact that several owners of such securities had received invoices for administration of accounts in the central depository even though their securities are worthless, SITA wrote.

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