Despite not much unexpected happened last week, Hungary has still remained in the focus of the leading international newspapers. The most debated topics are prime minister Viktor Orbán’s role and the policies the Hungarian government has been pursuing recently. In today’s HT blog post we have collected some of those typical opinions which circulate among journalists about Hungary.
RT.com – The bullying of Hungary – the country that dared to disobey the US and EU (by Neil Clark)
Fidesz has been upsetting some powerful people in the West ever since returning to power in 2010. The previous “Socialist”-led administration was hugely popular in the West because it did everything Washington and Brussels and the international banking set wanted. It imposed austerity on ordinary people, it privatized large sections of the economy, and it took out an unnecessary IMF loan. Ironically, the conservative-minded Fidesz party has proved to be much better socialists in power than the big-business and banker friendly “Socialists” they replaced.
New York Times – Hungary’s Dangerous Slide (by Editorial Board)
Instead of issuing tepid expressions of concern over antidemocratic policies, the European Union should be moving to sanction Hungary. Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, should exercise his power to force Mr. Navracsics to resign. Failure to take steps against the Orbán government would be abdicating the values that form the foundation of the European Union.
Bloomberg – Orbán 51% Return Helps Trichet See Why Hungary Is Smiling (by Márton Éder and András Gergely )
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán predicts Hungary’s economy will expand 3.2 percent this year, the fastest clip in eight years, after shrinking 1.7 percent in 2012. Orbán has waited four years to telegraph such a revival as his self-styled “unorthodox” policies, such as special taxes on selected industries and mandatory utility-price cuts, narrowed the budget deficit. […] Government-mandated reductions in household energy prices pushed inflation below zero, to the lowest rate since the 1960s, and allowed the central bank to repeatedly cut interest rates, which has helped lure investors to Hungarian debt.
Visegrad Insight – Winners and losers, Hungary’s Experiment With The Internet Levy (by Gábor Egry)
Hungary needs a new social coalition to oust Orbán, and the Internet tax has shown that there are common themes and ideas that could serve as the basis for it. These are not necessarily what most of the opposition groups wish to see (poverty, reduction of freedom, often fundamentalist policies, etc.), but there seems to be an opportunity to bind them together with issues of more immediate concern. Whether anyone will listen and learn from it is another matter.Given the behavior of large companies, the opposition’s track record, including new social movements, in coming up with new ideas and organizing work it would be exaggerated to say that Orbán’s fate is already sealed.
source: rt.com, nytimes.com, bloomberg.com and visegradinsight.eu photo: Hungarian flag – public domain