Czech PM dismisses EU report, says he fulfilled all obligations

Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has dismissed an EC legal opinion which states he has a conflict of interests, saying the leaked report was doubtless linked to Monday’s debate on the EU budget in the European Parliament.

Speaking after an early government session on Monday the prime minister said he he saw no reason why Czech taxpayers should have to return EU subsidies paid to the Agrofert conglomerate and was sure nothing of the sort would happen since he had fulfilled all his obligations under Czech law by putting Agrofert in a trust fund.

The leaked report, cited by The Guardian, concludes that Babiš is in a situation that “qualifies as a conflict of interest”, because public officials and politicians should not benefit from EU funds they ultimately control.

It said Czech taxpayers could thus be asked to repay at least some of the €82m paid to the conglomerate Agrofert in 2018.