17 Major Projects already in Brussels22 January 2009
The development of the Pest County stretch of Highway 4 is the most recent item added to the list of projects awaiting approval by the European Commission. This investment will cost a total 46.6 billion HUF and will satisfy a long-existing demand.
Another investment has been added to the list of major projects awaiting approval in Brussels, which currently includes 17 high value developments. The development of the Pest County stretch of Highway 4 will cost a total 46.6 billion HUF and will satisfy a long-existing demand. It is now the European Commission’s turn to review the soundly prepared investment plans. With this performance, Hungary is doing well at a European level, but what is even more important is that money will be flowing into the building industry thanks to developments of nearly 1000 billion HUF in value, which will lead to the creation of numerous new jobs.
We have been given the opportunity to implement important programmes worth several billions of HUF over the 2007-2013 period with the help of the European Union. In accordance with EU regulations, beyond approval by the Government, the approval of the European Union is also needed in the case of major programmes.
Hungary named over 40 major projects, out of which 19 projects have already been approved by the Government.16 projects (8 EEOP and 8 TOP) were sent to Brussels up to 20 January 2009. All of these projects are transport development or environmental protection investments. The overall funding value of these developments is equivalent to 703 billion HUF, whilst their total investment value is equivalent to 935 billion HUF.
The project concerning the development of Highway 4 to be implemented by the National Infrastructural Development Corporation that has just been added to this list today is the 19th item on the list of quality major projects sent to Brussels for approval. This is the only major project to be implemented within the framework of a regional operational programme, namely, the Central Hungary Operational Programme. The extension of the Pest County stretch of Highway 4 is expected to be completed by the end of 2011. This project will cost a total 46.6 billion HUF and its funding intensity is 85%. An altogether 25.8-km-long road will be constructed within the framework of the project, which equally includes widening a 15.2-km-road stretch to a two-by-two lane road and the construction of the Monor-Pilis bypass road. Together with this development, the funding value of major projects submitted to Brussels exceeds 743 billion HUF and the overall value of investments exceeds 982 billion HUF.
The way in which the European Commission approved the Debrecen tramway project, Hungary’s first major project, within a short period of time explicitly demonstrates the success of Hungarian development policy. Only a handful of other member states are able to boast similar decisions. These major projects are extremely relevant also because of how - due to their high value and sound preparation – they will represent responses to the challenges the building industry and labour market is facing due to the emerging crisis. All the more so, because of how the several billion HUF investment value of these major projects will generate contracts and orders within a short period of time, which means that jobs will be retained and created.
Thanks to the package of measures introduced by the Government to speed up 30 pieces of legislation, major investments - and therefore the implementation of major projects - effectively accelerated in Hungary from the middle of 2008. Only soundly conceptualised, assessed and prepared projects are submitted to Brussels. According to experts, the preparatory phase is twice as long as the actual construction, investment phase. Owing to how the National Assembly and Government endorsed the package of measures aimed at accelerating the procedure, fewer permits need to be obtained, administration is made easier and the construction process itself speeds up.
The vast majority of major projects are investments exceeding 13 billion HUF in value, whilst the maximum value of environmental protection projects is 6.5 billion HUF. Therefore, beyond approval by the Government of the given member state, the approval of the European Commission is equally needed in the case of these major projects. Hungarian major projects include major transport investments, such as Metro Line 4, the development of the tramway network in Szeged and Miskolc, Motorway M7, the construction of Highway M43 and the development of the Kelenföld-Székesfehérvár train line. But at the same time, major environmental protection developments are currently also awaiting approval in Brussels, such as, the re-cultivation of waste dumps in the Central Danubian region, the sewage network and waste programme of Békéscsaba and Nyíregyháza, or the waste water programme of Makó and its surrounding region.