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Špidla: a Half-Truth is Worse than a Lie
8. 9. 2010 / Vladimír Špidla
Former premier and current EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities Vladimír Špídla writes:
"Financial Times: Špidla's EU fund failed completely" some Czech media is saying. They refer to an article that was published in that newspaper September 6th. The fund in question (EGF, European globalization adjustment fund; almost 2 million euros) was designed to help those people who lost their jobs thanks to the economic crisis, for example. I presented a report on this fund to the European Parliament in 2007. The fund didn't fail. And it was not "Špidla's fund".
The European Commission acknowledges its growing pains. The fund has caused valid criticisms as well as legitimate defenders. The EU Commission has also informed about the fund's activities in a big amount of press conferences. We received 70 requests, which were altogether asking for 374 million euros, 23 of which arrived this year. About one-third of that has been delivered. The truth is that the approval process takes almost ten months.
And that is not surprising, because the amounts paid are high and some of the projects are problematic. The Fund's performance has improved since 2009, after the reforms I have suggested.
The use of the Fund's resources have been increasing every year. The Unilever corporation, which operates in the Central Bohemia region, will use the Fund's money, for example. Anyone can verify how the Fund works.
Put short and simply: the news about the failure of the so-called "Špidla's Fund", as the Czech media has been mistakenly calling it, is a propagandist half-truth mixed up with my name. No surprise, after all, we are just before regional elections...Vytisknout
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