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Hungary Gets Access to 10-bln-euro EU Funds

Hungary’s Regional Development Minister Tibor Navracsics on Wednesday welcomed the release by the European Commission of 10.2 billion euros (10.88 billion U.S. dollars) of previously frozen European Union (EU) funds destined for Hungary.

After a year of tough negotiations, the European Commission has recognized that Hungary has fulfilled the conditions allowing it to access the funding, Navracsics said on Facebook.

“Today, the European Commission adopts two decisions regarding Hungary and the rule of law situation in the country. One relates to the horizontal enabling conditions in so far as the judicial reform in Hungary is concerned, and the other concerns the budget conditionality mechanism,” the EC said in a statement released earlier on Wednesday.

“After a thorough assessment, and several exchanges with the Hungarian government, the Commission considers that Hungary has taken the measures it committed to take in order for the Commission to consider that the horizontal enabling condition on the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights is fulfilled in what concerns judicial independence. This means part of the above-mentioned funding would no longer be blocked, and therefore Hungary may start claiming reimbursements of up to around 10.2 billion euros,” it added.

However, a larger tranche of aid, totaling 21 billion euros, remains frozen due to issues related to child-protection law, risks to academic freedom, and the right to asylum, the EC explained.

Source: Xinhua