Budapest, January 9 (MTI) – The green LMP opposition party has repeated its call on the government to halt the Paks nuclear power plant expansion, claiming that the only real aim of the project is to pump cash into businesses backing the ruling Fidesz party.

The government will ruin the country in the next few decades “if it builds an expensive and needless nuclear power plant at the heavy cost of corruption,” LMP spokesman Jozsef Gal told a news conference on Saturday.

LMP has obtained a report on state-owned energy company MVM’s advertising costs, from which it can be deduced that energy policy criteria were not germane to the government’s “shady” decision to back the investment. Rather the opportunity for graft was the real motivation, Gal said. In response to the LMP spokesman’s statement, Fidesz said in a statement that Paks supplied the cheapest electricity. Expanding the plant will guarantee cheap and safe energy for Hungarian families over the long term.

Without the upgrade Hungarian citizens would have to rely on foreign energy providers. This was the case when the left wing was in power and the price of electricity doubled, it added.

The daily Magyar Idok said on Saturday: “The Paks nuclear power plant expansion is good business for Hungary”. Citing a recent report by Rothschild bank arguing that the Paks II investment was competitive and would recoup the investment costs under market conditions, it said government funding would be unnecessary. The investment is strategically important because Hungary’s existing electricity generating capacities will fall off while capacity-increasing investment will guarantee secure supplies in the future, the paper added.


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