SLOVAKIA will probably have to return part of the money that it received from EU funds due to murky tenders, the TA3 news channel reported, based on information from the Finance Ministry and the Public Procurement Office (ÚRSO). No further details about the sum to be returned have been given yet.
Auditors from the European Commission (EC) have noted that the appendices of the deals were among the main drawbacks. Béla Angyal, the ÚRSO head, told TA3 that this was unacceptable.
“They were looking at it as at a negotiation without publishing, and thus as if it was done without competition,” Angyal said.
The Finance Ministry is now negotiating the sum to be returned with the EC.
“In the case of unlawful drawing down of financial resources from the EU, the individual companies or budget chapters responsible will have to return the resources,” the Finance Ministry’s spokesman Miroslav Šmál told TA3.
TA3 reported that the financial corrections relate to the withdrawal of EU funds in the years 2004 – 2006, for which the previous government led by Mikuláš Dzurinda is responsible. According to Angyal, similar problems remain today, and therefore more corrections can be expected in the future.
5. Oct 2009 at 0:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff