POLITICS & INSTITUTIONS - POLITICS

Superdreckskëscht

Environment ministry reacts to opinion on waste recycling contract



The opinion submitted to parliament came following criticism of a market monopoly over the 11-year agreement between the state and the waste recycling company. Photo: Mike Zenari.

The opinion submitted to parliament came following criticism of a market monopoly over the 11-year agreement between the state and the waste recycling company. Photo: Mike Zenari.

The environment ministry on the evening of 11 January responded to an expert opinion on the contract between the waste recycling centre Superdreckskëscht (SDK) and the government. The experts had argued that there was no legal basis for the contract. 

Responding to the expert opinion presented to the parliament on 10 January, the ministry said the law of 2005, which regulates the financing and functioning of the SDK, was voted specially for this contract.

“There is no special link between the activities of the Superdreckskëscht and the constitutional question that is raised in the opinion of the scientific cell,” said the ministry in an official statement. The expert opinion questioned the legitimacy of the contract between the state and the waste recycling centre Superdreckskëscht, and the special 2005 law that supports the contract.

The expert opinion argued that the law from 2005 didn’t respect Article 99 of the constitution, which stipulates that “no charge on the State budget for more than one financial year may be established except by a special law.” This, however, was a question of interpretation of the constitutional article, argued the ministry.

“The question of the interpretation of the article 99 of the constitution goes far beyond the contract between SDK and the government,” reads the statement. However, should the experts’ interpretation of the Article 99 be accepted, the ministry of the environment would take the necessary changes to regulate the situation. 

According to minutes of the meeting on Monday--conducted in the absence of environment minister Carole Dieschbourg (déi Gréng)--, the expert advice said that, to allow for better supervision of the state’s budget, special legislation concerning the multiannual expense should have been created. The agreement between SDK and the environment ministry generates an expense of €10m a year, meaning that for the 2018-2028 span, it has already cost more than €40m.

A special law has to be drafted for contracts between companies and the state, when the contract generates a cost of more than €40m. 

In September last year, an audit commissioned into the contract between the state and the SuperDrecksKëscht recycling centre had concluded that it did not violate public tender rules, following accusations of a market monopoly.

Dieschbourg will discuss the matter in more detail during the environmental commission on 17 January.