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Parliamentary question - E-002561/2015Parliamentary question

Corruption in Hungary

Question for written answer E-002561-15
to the Commission
Rule 130
Csaba Molnár (S&D)

The situation in Hungary is serious cause for concern. The US recently banned six Hungarian government officials from its territory because of suspected corruption, and the Sarajevo-based Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) voted Viktor Orbán as the second most corrupt politician. The EU institutions have so far failed to take effective measures to curb corruption in Hungary. Most recently Lőrinc Mészáros, a friend of the prime minister, rose from being a simple gas fitter to one of the richest people in Hungary in a few years. The Mayor of Felcsút bought a pig farm at the end of 2014, which was precisely when the Hungarian agricultural authorities asked the Commission for permission to double animal welfare assistance. The current Hungarian government is trying to make the businesses of those close to it profitable at the expense of EU taxpayers. In addition, in January the Hungarian authorities published a call for tenders for the construction and renovation of embankments for which the company owned by Lőrinc Mészáros is the only suitable applicant. This means that, with no price competition, the sole applicant who is suitable can do the necessary work for any amount he wishes from the EU's 2007-2013 budget.

— Does the Commission think that, on the basis of reports by the US and individual international organisations, there is a need for a comprehensive investigation by OLAF of Hungary's use of EU funds?

— In the Commission's view, to what extent is corruption in the Hungarian government eroding the EU's credibility, given the many cases where EU taxpayers' money simply disappears?

— In the Commission's view, when will the European Public Prosecutor's Office, which would have exclusive jurisdiction to uncover cases of corruption involving EU funds, be established?