MEPs of Hungary’s ruling Fidesz-KDNP(Christian Democrats) coalition urge the European Commission to come up with proposals aimed at helping countries in a similar situation to Hungary in terms of protection against coronavirus and mitigating the epidemic’s economic and social ramifications, Fidesz MEP Tamás Deutsch said on public television on Friday.
Deutsch said that the European Parliament’s aid package of 37 billion euros, passed on Thursday, would only benefit “some one third, fewer than half” of European Union members. “For us, Hungarians, this proposal will not mean a single cent in extra funding,” he insisted.
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The Fidesz-Christian Democrat group in the European People’s Party has asked the party group’s leadership to forward its own package to the Commission, aimed at helping “the other two thirds” of countries, Deutsch said.
Concerning details, Deutsch said that the EC should provide pre-financing in areas where a member state has not yet tied up allocated community funds. “This would result in extra resources for Hungary,” he said.
Deutsch called it important that EU funds should not only be used in economically underdeveloped regions because “the virus is not selective” and better-off regions, such as central Hungary, could also require assistance.
Meanwhile, opposition MSZP’s MEP, István Ujhelyi, has pointed out that 5.6 billion euros were allocated to Hungary from the EU’s 37 billion euro aid package passed on Thursday. Ujhelyi insisted that the government was lying when it said that it could no longer use those funds because those sums, as part of the 2014-2020 EU budget, were all tied up.
In the featured photo illustration: Fidesz MEP Tamás Deutsch and Europen Commission president Ursula Von der Leyen. Photo by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI