Bratislava, October 15 (TASR) – The Agricultural Payment Agency (PPA) has passed an audit by European auditors, head of the Agriculture Ministry Samuel Vlcan (an OLaNO nominee) said at a press conference on Friday, with PPA general director Jozef Kiss in attendance.
The minister therefore decided that the PPA will regain its accreditation. The PPA’s accreditation has been conditionally suspended since last October.
“As you know, the PPA was a symbol of corruption in the past, and I believe that from today it will be a symbol of hope for rural development,” said Vlcan, adding that he believes that in a short time the agency will gain the trust not only of farmers but also of the public, in that it will help eliminate investment debt in the entire agricultural sector and that it will also help in restoration of forests.
“I believe that within three or four months, the agency will be at full capacity and by the end of the year it will be able to launch the already announced calls to support farmers as well as food producers,” the minister said, noting that obtaining full accreditation doesn’t end the Agriculture Ministry’s efforts to modernise the PPA.
The minister explained that obtaining full accreditation means that the PPA can already start the evaluation of several submitted applications on the basis of new processes. “We have about 1,200 of them, which we need to process,” said Vlcan, adding that the PPA has also suspended several payments since the summer.
Kiss pointed out that in terms of capacity and processes, the PPA is ready to restart all suspended activities. The suspended payments are being processed. “We expect that we’ll be able to release them in the coming months, the deadline is the end of the year,” said Kiss. The suspended payments are worth about €60 million.