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Some EU lawmakers oppose release of funds to Hungary’s Orban

Some European Union lawmakers urged their executive Commission not to unlock billions of euros in funds for Hungary. They claimed that Prime Minister Viktor Orban was in violation of democratic norms.

The Brussels-based European Commission is set to endorse Hungary’s funding in the amount of one tenth of the country’s estimated 2022 GDP. After Budapest took steps to improve anti-graft safeguards and the independence of its judiciary, this is now.

Orban fought bitterly against the EU over democratic norms. Hungarian President Orban placed restrictions on journalists, academics, judges and NGOs, and also repressed gays and migrants’ rights.

According to the European Parliament’s Socialist & Democrats Section, along with the Renew and Greens factions of the European Parliament, the most recent changes have not been enough to ensure a stable democracy for Hungary.


Eider Gardiazabal Rubial, a Spanish member of S&D, stated that the Hungarian government is not following the rule. He suggested that it would be a good decision to approve the freezing of funds.

Sophia in ‘t Ved (a Dutch liberal) stated that Orban was trying blackmail the EU by blocking joint decisions that required unanimity. These included a minimum global corporate income taxes and EUR18 billion of planned support for Ukraine in fighting Russia.

She stated that horsetrading was not compatible with her values.


Daniel Freund, a German Green activist, and an ex-Activist For Transparency International, stated: “Money should not be frozen once or forever, it is what Orban understands.”

The largest group represented in the EU parliament was the speaker, but the European People’s Party, which is centre-right, was less vocal. Budapest was supported by a member from the European Conservatives and Reformists, where Orban’s Fidesz sits.

The heated exchanges will not distract from the EU source stating that funds totaling EUR14.7bn were on their horizon.

Didier Reynders (European Commissioner for Justice) spoke on behalf the executive, and stated that there has been progress in recent months with negotiations between Brussels and Budapest.

Orban may not be able unlock all the money but he will likely receive conditional approval from the Commission for EUR7.2bn, which was allocated for Hungary by the bloc’s stimulus fund. This fund is designed to help economies recover from the COVID-19 epidemic.

The Commission is expected to also recommend lowering corruption penalties from EUR7.5bn (or at least 65% of the development funds envisaged for Hungary in the future).

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EU Reporter publishes articles sourced from many outside sources that reflect a broad range of views. These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of EU Reporter.

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