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Orbán should do the reforms and let Hungarians benefit from the EU funds, says Iratxe García

Date

30 Nov 2022

Sections

Euro & Finance

The Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament welcome the European Commission’s decision to keep the EU money for the Orbán government frozen, since it hasn’t made real reforms to secure a functioning rule of law to the detriment of Hungarians and all other European citizens.

Under these circumstances, it would be unacceptable to disburse the 5,7 billion euros of Hungary’s recovery plan in addition to the 7,5 billion euros of the already frozen cohesion funds. The Socialists and Democrats call on member states to support the decision taken today by the European Commission.

Iratxe García, president of the S&D Group, said:

“The European Commission got our message, not just the S&D’s, but the strong message of unity sent by the European Parliament last week in Strasbourg: that a functioning rule of law is a precondition to receive any EU funds. The rule of law is not negotiable!

“Now it is the time for EU member states to also act with responsibility when they meet in the Council: to protect taxpayers’ money and not allow the release of these funds until real reforms are in place. Otherwise, the EU would be failing Hungarians in the first place, because they deserve the same degree of freedom, democracy and rule of law as any other EU citizen.

“This situation is very unfortunate, because Hungarians were no less hit by the economic consequences of Covid-19 than other EU citizens, and they need EU financial support. I hope Viktor Orbán will react and implement the reforms.

“The Orbán government has failed to produce any meaningful reform. Instead of restoring judicial independence, Orbán has used this time to blackmail the EU on crucial decisions. It’s time to allow the European Union to adopt a minimum corporate tax rate! Breaking the unity of the EU makes us all weaker and undermines solidarity.”

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