Paks II: Questionable decision; further legislative debates to be expected
According to MEP Benedek Jávor, today’s decision by the European Commission on closing the infringement procedure on the lack of tendering in the case of the construction of Paks II did not come as a surprise but is bad news for Hungarian tax-payers and it projects further legislative debates.
During summer Mr. Jávor was already talking about a soon-concluding agreement between the European Commission and the Hungarian government. At the same time, based on a letter sent by the EC in August to Mr. Jávor as a complainant, he believes that the decision is based on false information and flawed legal interpretation and it will result in more legal debates. This means that the debate on Paks II is far from being closed, all the more so because the procedure on illegal state aid in the project is still ongoing.
“For a more thorough analysis on the closing of the infringement procedure, we need to see its details. I am looking forward to the decision’s detailed reasoning, which the European Commission will send to me as the complainant, and which should be made public”, said the representative MEP for Dialogue for Hungary. At the same time, he believes that if the Commission’s reasoning was that evading the rules of procurement was possible because apart from the Russians nobody was able to comply with the Hungarian technical and security requirements, then the EC’s decision will probably mean even more challenges for the Paks project, the Hungarian government and the European Commission itself as well. Because, if the reasoning of the decision is based on the above, then the Hungarian regulation may be contravening to the principles of the internal market that are considered the basis of the EU. And this could also have severe consequences.
According to Benedek Jávor, Paks II is severely harmful for Hungary not only financially, but in terms of energy policy and external affairs as well, and so he will keep doing everything it takes in order to defend the country from such threats. In response to János Lázár’s comments, Mr. Jávor thanked the minister’s advice and said he would take it into consideration, however he expressed bad news for Mr. Lázár, as he would keep working with the same determination and effort. He knows that this would cause problems for the minister – as it did hitherto – but he expressed a genuine hope that the minister would cope with the difficulties.