Hungary Wants ‘Fair EU Recovery Package’

Economy Europe

Hungary wants a fair EU recovery package, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in Lednice, in the Czech Republic, attending a meeting of the Visegrad Group.

Orbán said the current proposal was discriminatory. At a joint press conference, he said Hungary’s attitude to the recovery fund was essentially positive, but the draft still needed much work to be done on it to remove “absurd elements”. Rich countries, by and large, are set to receive more money than poorer ones, he said, adding that this was “morally problematic”.

Orbán also called for more flexibility in how funds are used by each country according to their particular needs. The rebate system, he added, should be abandoned, noting that Britain, which was a prime beneficiary of the rebate, had left the union. The amount saved could be distributed fairly among member states, he added. “We don’t want to take anything away” from southern countries, he said, adding that “countries richer than us”, however, should not receive greater support. Orbán said there was a gulf in thinking between European approaches to relaunching the economy and the Hungarian principle that “money must be earned first before it is spent”. The risk of reversing that order burdens everyone, he added.

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