Tibor Navracsics, the candidate to lead a new ministry for regional development and the utilisation of European Union funds, said on Wednesday that his ministry’s top priority would be the signing of EU agreements.
At a hearing before parliament’s European affairs committee, Navracsics expressed hope that both the partnership agreement on the development cycle and the deal on the post-pandemic recovery fund would be signed in the second half of the year.
EU funds are crucial in every sector, he said, adding that his ministry would work to draw down as much development funding as possible.
Navracsics said the ministry would operate under the aegis of the Prime Minister’s Office, adding that he would be aided by three state secretaries.
He said the ministry’s functions could be divided into two main parts. One will be dealing with the utilisation of EU funds and related tasks. The other area will be regional development, regional policy and the aim that regional policy is factored into Hungary’s development policy in the next EU funding cycle, he said.
Navracsics underlined the link between the two areas, noting that EU funds were the basis for Hungary’s most important investment projects and regional development.
He said he will work to devise a development policy that would keep Hungary on a growth path in the coming period and strengthen regional cohesion. The policy will aim to help less developed areas catch up with the national and EU average and allow the more competitive and leading regions become competitive at the EU level, he said.
The committee supported Navracsics’s nomination with 6 votes in favour, 1 against and 1 abstention.
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