Despite acknowledging the actions Hungary has taken to date to address the European Commission’s concerns regarding the rule of law, Arianna Podesta, a spokeperson of the EC, said on Thursday that the organization finds some corrective measures put forth by the Hungarian government to be insufficient in terms of compliance with the decree on the conditionality of the rule of law.
According to Podesta, on Wednesday the Commission discussed the next steps to be taken in the ongoing rule-of-law case against Hungary and instructed Johannes Hahn, the Commissioner for Budget and Administration, to inform the Hungarian authorities of the recommendations the commission will make if it is determined that the corrective measures taken by Hungary are insufficient.
Despite a number of corrective actions included in the Hungarian government’s response that was released last month, she claimed that it did not fully address all of the body’s concerns.
Podesta stated that Hungary now has a month to submit additional corrective actions and that the EC was ready to continue discussions with Hungary over the suitability of the initiatives the country has suggested.
She said that the EC will take into consideration Hungary’s latest remedial measures as well as any others the government will put forward over the coming months, before deciding whether to recommend to the European Council if any steps should be taken in the matter.
The EC activated the mechanism in the EU budget linking funding to the rule of law against Hungary in April, with EC President Ursula von der Leyen naming anti-corruption measures as the most important criteria in the procedure. The Hungarian government sent a response addressing the commission’s concerns at the end of June.
Meanwhile, in recent weeks, several members of the Hungarian government have repeatedly stressed that an agreement between Hungary and Brussels on EU funds is within close reach.
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