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No decision taken yet on site for ESS

No decision has yet been taken on the location of the European Spallation Source (ESS), Europe's planned €1.1 billion neutron research centre, Géza Egyed, Hungary’s government commissioner for the project, said on Saturday, after press reports said the Swedish city of Lund would host the ESS.

Debrecen is competing with Lund and with Bilbao, in Spain, to host the ESS.

The reports appeared in the Swedish press after an informal meeting of EU ministers in charge of R+D on Thursday.

Egyed said the minister from the Czech Republic, which holds the EU’s rotating presidency, asked member states to submit their stand on the host for the ESS in writing in the coming weeks. The responses will determine whether an official decision can be taken on the matter.

The ESS would create about 600 workplaces, but it would also draw 4,000-5,000 guest researchers each year.

The government said in September it would contribute HUF 90 billion (€320 million) toward establishing the research centre, or about one-third of the total cost. Spain and Sweden are offering about the same amount, but the total cost of the project would be €200-250 million less if built in Hungary, the Ministry of National Development and the Economy said. (MTI-ECONEWS)