Slovakia sees new EU funds blocked as it lacks crucial strategy
Slovakia does not fulfil the basic criteria for the absorption of EU funds targeting social inclusion and poverty from the new programming period, meaning it will not be eligible for reimbursement, according to the European Commission, EURACTIV Slovakia reports.
This is because the Slovak government lost a crucial no-confidence vote in December, ensuring it could not push through its crucial strategy towards ending homelessness through the National Council, despite this being one of the requirements agreed upon with the Commission.
“The government does not currently have the competence to negotiate such material,” government spokeswoman Ľubica Janíková told EURACTIV Slovakia.
Slovakia will thus not be eligible for reimbursement of EU funding for social inclusion and poverty reduction projects, at least until new elections are held at the end of September. These were supposed to fund, for example, the construction of community centres or affordable housing projects.
“If a member state requests reimbursement of expenditure related to these unfulfilled basic conditions, the Commission will not be able to reimburse it,” a European Commission source said.
Slovakia’s Investments and Regional Development Ministry, which is in charge of EU funds, expects the necessary documents to be adopted before Slovakia asks for the expenditure to be reimbursed.
“We assume that conditions will be met by the deadline for sending the first payment request and that the Slovak Republic will be reimbursed by the European Commission,” according to the ministry’s spokesman, Andrej Ďuríček.
The ministry plans to publish the first calls for EU funds this quarter.
(Michal Hudec | EURACTIV.sk)