New emission tender to be investigated

The dubious tender over previous emission sales to US garage-based company Interblue Group was not the last in the ongoing saga.

The new Minister for Agriculture, Environment and Regional Development, Zsolt Simon (Most-Hid), has announced that an internal investigation will be carried out regarding also the tender on consulting services in the sale of remaining emission quotas, which was announced by the outgoing Minister for the Environment, Jozef Medved (MP for Smer-SD), already five days after the parliamentary elections on 12 June.

The conditions of the tender are suspect as the winner can make decisions about future emission sales also in the years to come, meaning the winner of the tender will decide who to sell the emissions to and under what conditions.

“I want no liaison, I want transparent solutions,” said the new minister, who also admitted that undoing the scandalous sale of emission quotas by the Slovak National Party (SNS) will probably be impossible, although the ministry was working also on this.

On the future of emission sales, he said: “I want to prevent damages incurred by the sale of emissions or from giving them away in a way that could be problematic in future”.

In the last sale of emission quotas in 2008 to Interblue Group, Norbert Havalec was a consultant to the ministry, and then later ‘switched sides’ to become Interblue Group project manager. For the past year the transaction has been under investigation in Slovakia, Switzerland and the USA.

Let’s hope the new minister is successful in preventing more public money from ‘going up in smoke’.

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