Respekt: EU budget chief suggests ways for Czech PM to avoid conflict of interest

16-12-2018

EU Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger has recommended three ways for Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) to avoid a conflict of interest as regards the Agrofert concern, the investigative weekly Respekt reports.

Oettinger said in a letter, published in part by Respekt, that Babiš should either take sever his and his family’s ties to Agrofert, which the billionaire businessman founded; ensure that Agrofert ceases to accept EU subsidies; or refrain from taking part in some decisions on allocating funds.

Last week, the European Parliament approved a resolution calling on the European Commission to suspend all EU subsidies to companies belonging to Agrofert until the question of whether he de facto retains control over it is settled.

Meanwhile, the European Commission has announced it will send a team of auditors to the Czech Republic to look into the distribution of EU subsidies from 2007 until the present day.