Hungary is entitled to receive EUR 16.83 billion from the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), of which EUR 7.17 billion would be in the form of grants and EUR 9.66 billion in the form of loans. In February 2019, the Government launched a comprehensive programme to help the 300 most disadvantaged settlements. The programme leader is the NGO called "Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta". 40 municipalities have been selected by the central programme manager to install photovoltaic power plants, and the 3,500 households to be supported will be selected with the involvement of local staff.
General: allocation, definition, transposition
Specific allocation for energy communities
A centralised programme for social PV installations in the poorest settlements of Hungary is planned as a special type of energy community.
Definition of energy communities in line with EU legislation
Only a certain type of energy community is mentioned and it is only referred to as a generating unit served by the investment. This programme is coordinated by the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta. This narrow delimitation of the concept of energy communities is not in line with EU Directives.
Proportionality of share of total fund allocated to energy communities
A relatively small amount of the total funds of the Hungarian Recovery and Resilience Fund are allocated to energy communities.
Availability of tailored financing tools
Only grants will be available as a form of financing for energy communities. Different financing tools available that fit different situations (e.g., loans, guarantees, blended finance) are not foreseen.
Link to a wider scope of activities and objectives
Link between energy communities, building renovation and energy efficiency
The scheme does not mention a link between energy communities, building renovation and energy efficiency.
Recognition of energy communities under multiple objectives
Energy communities are explicitly linked with the tackling of energy poverty, especially in the context of disadvantaged settlements. There are no other links to additional objectives.
Transparency and inclusiveness
Holistic strategy to provide financing across different levels of project development
There is no holistic strategy in place to provide financing across different levels of project development (i.e., facilitating grid acess, one stop shops, awareness raising & capacity building, pilot financing, administrative, business model and legal advice)
Transparency of the design and communication of the schemes and measures
Despite organising a public consultation on the Recovery and Resilience Plan, not many of the suggestions by civil society were taken into account.
Selection criteria and the prioritisation of various social components
The selection criteria emphasise energy communities that tackle energy poverty. Other than this, the criteria are not deeply elaborated.
Decentralised tender process
Open calls under the Hungarian Recovery and Resilience Fund are centralised.
Existence of procedures to facilitate the participation of energy communities in open calls
There are no procedures yet to facilitate the participation of energy communities in open calls.
Stability and predictability of the programme through time
An operation is in place to collect lessons learned on local implementation of the RRF programmes. The collected information will be used to improve the next steps of the centralised programme.
Inclusion of energy communities in national REPowerEU chapter
In February 2023, a 20-item list [https://telex.hu/gazdasag/2023/02/06/lantos-csaba-es-navracsics-tibor-soha-nem-latott-kozel-6000-milliard-forintos-energiatervet-keszit] was published in independent media, regarding energy infrastructure plans, potentially to be (partly) financed from RRF loans & REPowerEU. One of the included items was community energy. But due to recent developments (like plans to support fossil gas projects) there is a high risk that community energy will be removed from the REPowerEU chapters.