Government office chief János Lázár officially announced the appointment of Paks Mayor János Süli as minister without portfolio in charge of overseeing and managing the upgrade of the Paks nuclear power plant. Süli himself confirmed media speculation on Wednesday that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán had picked him for the role. Speaking at a session of the Paks Social Council, Lázár said Süli’s appointment would be made official within the coming days and he is expected to be sworn in on May 2. Given that Süli is currently mayor of Paks, a by-election will have to be held in the town to replace him, Lázár added.
He said the government’s goal was to have the Paks plant provide for 50% of Hungary’s electricity consumption, with the remainder to be derived from renewable energy sources, mainly solar energy. The nuclear plant’s purpose is to provide cheap electricity to households and the economy, he said. The government office chief also announced that the government will earmark 1.5 billion forints (EUR 4.8 million) for development projects in Paks and surrounding municipalities this year.