More funds to go on insulating buildings

AS PART of the fight against the economic crisis the state will encourage energy conservation by supporting more thermal insulation of buildings, the SITA newswire reported.

AS PART of the fight against the economic crisis the state will encourage energy conservation by supporting more thermal insulation of buildings, the SITA newswire reported.

Prime Minister Robert Fico said after a session of the Council for the Economic Crisis on April 2 that it had agreed to fund the installation of insulation by increasing the resources of the State Housing Development Fund. The state will put an additional €66.39 million into the Fund’s thermal insulation programme.

Experts are yet to discuss the specific conditions for providing this support. The additional allocation is meant to simplify the access of private individuals, corporate entities and towns and villages to resources for thermal insulation of buildings. Fico hopes action will be taken promptly in order to be able to launch the programme by May 2009.

The provision of more funds for the State Housing Development Fund will be secured by further cuts in some other ministries’ spending, Fico said, as reported by SITA. Finance Minister Ján Počiatek said that it is realistic to secure the required sum within allocations to individual budget chapters, though he did admit that reserves are shrinking.

The opposition representative on the Economic Crisis Council, Vladimír Tvaroška, said that the amount allocated for the new thermal insulation program is insufficient. According to the measure as it is now, people will only be granted loans for thermal insulation of their homes and be obliged to repay them later.

Tvaroška said thermal insulation needs a more significant impulse, adding that direct state subsidies could be the source for that, SITA reported him saying.

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