First Payment from Recovery Plan Threatened by University Education Reform

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Education Minister Branislav Groehling (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, October 21 (TASR) – Slovakia wants to apply for €458.3 million from the European Commission as its first payment from the recovery and resilience plan, but it can only submit a payment application if it’s passed all the milestones and met all the targets in the given group, the state has announced on the planobnovy.sk website.

There are 14 milestones related to the first application. There is also a traffic light on the website indicating which milestones might be reached only with delays, thereby jeopardising the submission of the whole payment application.

Among the first 14 milestones, university education reform is currently showing red. This means that the state expects a big delay or a failure to meet targets in university reform. The deadline for the targets is the end of this year.

An amber light is on for the reform of the judiciary, i.e. the new court roadmap sponsored by Justice Minister Maria Kolikova with the same deadline. This means that the state expects a maximum delay of one quarter for this reform.

Amber is also showing for the introduction of spending limits in the law on budgetary rules, for which the deadline is the final quarter of this year.

Conversely, three of the 14 milestones have already been passed. These include the reform of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAV); the creation of the National Implementation and Coordination Authority Audit and Control; and the removal of restrictions on technical capacities for electricity transmission within the Slovak electricity transmission network.

Progress in meeting of the remaining eight targets is on schedule. This applies, for example, to investment plans for projects involving railway infrastructure, implementing cycling transport projects and a strategy for the internationalisation of universities.