AMID a nationwide teachers’ strike and struggling with the state budget, the cabinet of Prime Minister Robert Fico grew in number on November 26 when Ľubomír Vážny, a former transport minister, was appointed deputy prime minister for investment.
Vážny’s responsibility will lie mainly with the coordination of large investment projects with estimated costs of over €1 billion, as well as the supervision of large investment projects with expected costs of less than €1 billion based on the government’s agreement, the SITA newswire reported.
The deputy prime minister for investment will also cooperate in coordinating the use of EU funds in the 2014-2020 programming period, as well as preparation of the Partnership Agreement for 2014-2020 at the national level, i.e. activities covered by the Transport Ministry. For this reason, Vážny is to become the deputy chair of the Cabinet’s Partnership Agreement Council, SITA wrote.
After his appointment to the position, Vážny said it would be necessary to adopt a strategy of long-term economic development of Slovakia and also said his ambition is that this strategy would not only be approved by the cabinet, but also supported by the entire political spectrum.
Another duty of the deputy prime minister for investment will be to assess whether major investment projects are realistic and necessary, as well as to present to the cabinet feasibility studies of specific proposals and funding proposals for their construction. Additionally, he should develop a strategy for the economic development of Slovakia, which should include the concept of development programmes for the economy. According to Vážny, it will be important to adjust the terms for better use of EU funds, which should be simplified, accelerated, and free of red tape, SITA reported.