“Any EU funds we lose in the next period, even if it is only one euro cent, will be the sole responsibility of the Hungarian Prime Minister and the Fidesz government”; said Socialist MEP István Ujhelyi in an online press conference on Wednesday. According to the MSZP MEP, the current government is more interested in building and maintaining the “vassalage system of the NER
(Orbán’s so-called National Cooperation System) oligarchs”; than in creating a secure living for
Ujhelyi said that the European Commission is likely to withhold all funds as a consequence of the failed negotiations, and in the worst-case scenario, all EU funding could be frozen, including some HUF 6,000 billion in the Recovery Fund, and nearly HUF 13,000 billion in the next multi-annual budget. According to the Socialist politician, it would be “Hungary”s deep dive”; if most of the funds were frozen, because this would not only mean that development projects could be cancelled, but the forint would plummet further, international confidence would weaken further, inflation would continue to rise, jobs would disappear, and the government would take out more expensive loans fearing a “hunger riot”; At the press conference, the Social Democrat MEP also said that Viktor Orbán had deliberately and consciously used inciting and scandalous phrases in Tusványos, because he wanted to further fuel the politically motivated dispute between Brussels and the Hungarian government, which he would later be able to invoke in a spirit of insult when resources would be withheld.
“We will be told that the EU is the reason why there is no wage increase, and the EU is the reason why the remainder of the cuts in the public utility bill must be withdrawn, but the blame for this will not lie with the EU, but with the Hungarian government, which has put the country in this situation”; Ujhelyi said. The MSZP MEP stressed that the rule of law procedure has nothing to do with the so- called child protection law, the European energy policy controversy or the disagreements over migration; it is only about guaranteeing the interests of European taxpayers and the protection of EU funds. According to Ujhelyi, only a very serious and surprising change can lead to a full agreement with Brussels, but the Socialist MEP said that a radical change in the operational logic of the NER is unlikely to be expected from the government. At the press conference, the MSZP MEP demanded that both the European institutions and the Hungarian government make public as soon as possible their official correspondence during the rule of law procedure, thus making clear what EU criticisms and expectations there are regarding the eligibility of the funds, and what answers and commitments the Hungarian government has given to these, which Brussels has reportedly not found satisfactory so far.
“We have the right to know what accusations the Fidesz government has received, how it has
defended itself against them and what chance Hungary has of receiving all the funds we are entitled
to”; István Ujhelyi concluded at the online press conference.
Brussels/Budapest – 28/7/2022