In Germany, Orbán Threatens “If the European Union Cannot Provide Financial support, We Will Turn to China”
Addressing a forum of leading German companies in Berlin, Hungary’s Prime Minister said 2018 would be a critical year for Europe, stressing that the continent had to save the Schengen system if it was to retain or boost its competitiveness.
“Central Europe has serious disadvantages to overcome in terms of infrastructure; there is still a lot to be done in this area,” Viktor Orbán was quoted as saying by Bertalan Havasi, his press chief, at the Welt-Wirtschaftsgipfel (WWG) forum. “If the European Union cannot provide financial support, we will turn to China,” the prime minister added. To date, Hungary has received billions of euros in assistance from the EU, while the Orbán government has continued to paint the bloc in a negative light.
Orbán, who was the guest of honour at the WWG, said the Visegrad Group (V4) (the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia) was showing dynamic growth, and would catch up to the more prosperous western countries by 2030. By that year, the Visegrad Group, along with Germany, would become the biggest net contributors to the EU’s budget, he said. Currently, the V4 countries’ economies are significantly weaker than those of their western countterparts.
Turning to his regular topic of migration, the prime minister claimed that in 2018, EU member states must enforce the will of their people. In addition, he underlined the importance of protecting the bloc’s external borders. Havasi said that the companies taking part in the forum have a combined annual turnover of nearly 800 billion euros, and employ around three million people.