Extracts from the joint press conference by Olli Rehn and Johannes Hahn on the suspension of 495 million euro of Cohesion Fund for Hungary for 2013
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 22/02/2012 First transmission: 22/02/2012
On 22 February 2012, Olli Rehn, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro, and Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy, participated to a press conference in Brussels. On this occasion, they announced that the European Commission is to suspend 495 million euro of Cohesion Fund commitments taking effect on 1 January 2013, and representing 0.5 % of GDP and 29% of the country's Cohesion fund allocations for 2013.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Arrival of Olli Rehn, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro, and Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy, at the press conference, in Brussels (2 shots)
||Soundbite (in ENGLISH) by Olli Rehn: The Commission proposes to suspend 495 million euro of EU Cohesion Fund commitments for Hungary for 2013 because of its failure to address its excessive government deficit.
||Cutaway of the journalists
||Soundbite (in ENGLISH) by Olli Rehn: This decision today is to be regarded as an incentive to correct a deviation and not as a punishment. It is a fair and proportionate measure over a preventive nature.
||General view of the conference room
||Soundbite (in ENGLISH) by Olli Rehn: We have received two letters recently from the Hungarian government announcing new fiscal measures, one from the Hungarian Finance Minister and the other one from the Hungarian Prime Minister. These letters did not present such a king of newly-adopted measures of fiscal consolidation which could immediately change the picture of the European Commission on Hungarian public finances. All consolidation measures should be sufficiently detailed and substantiated, and publicly announced. Neither of the conditions are met by the measures contained in Prime Minister Orban's letter. Given the downward revision of the growth forecast for Hungary, it seems likely that additional measures will be needed to bring the deficit below 3% of treaty reference value.
||Cutaway of the speakers
||Soundbite (in ENGLISH) by Johannes Hahn: The overarching aim of this proposal is to prevent further economic difficulties, stimulating the Hungarian authorities to put the house in order. I am also convinced that this is a proportionate and credible proposal. The Commission is allowed to propose partial or total suspension of the allocated funding for the following year. The Commission has chosen a balanced approach, suspending only part of the funding for next year. The proposal foresees a transparent method whereby an amount corresponding to 50% of the commitment of 2013 or 0.5% of the country's GDP is suspended, which ever is the lowest.
||Cutaways of the conference room (3 shots)