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EC finds Altus contract in order

History

The European Commission officially informed the Hungarian government that everything is in order with the contract awarded to Altus, a company owned by current leader of the Democratic Coalition opposition party and former PM Ferenc Gyurcsány, to assess European Union-financed development projects from 2014 to 2020, Cabinet Chief János Lázár said at his regular weekly press conference yesterday.

The Hungarian government earlier put forward a request to the European Commission for information regarding a HUF 1.5 bln contract given to Altus. The government queried how Altus was chosen to assess EU-financed development projects being carried out between 2014 and 2020. Lázár said earlier that the main concern was that Altus could not perform its tasks "impartially and without regard to political matters".

Yesterday Lázár said he was informed in an official letter that there were no problems with the procedure, but he also received an offer from "the ever courteous officials of the EC" for consultation on the matter. The cabinet chief promised to raise the issue with EC officials next time he is in Brussels as he believes it could be a case of illegal political party financing.

Nándor Csepreghy, deputy state secretary at the prime ministerʼs office, confirmed to Hungarian daily Napi Gazdaság yesterday that Lázár is scheduled to travel to Brussels in June to will meet with EC Director-General Walter Deffaa, to whom the government addressed its query concerning the Altus contract.

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