Nine EU Member States, including Hungary, are jointly asking Brussels for financial assistance. The countries most affected by the wave of refugees following Russia’s attack on Ukraine are asking for this support.
Czech Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Regional Development, Ivan Bartos, announced in Prague on Thursday that nine EU countries will present a 14-point package of measures to the European Commission by the end of April. He said that the package of measures was proposed jointly by the four Visegrad countries (the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia), Bulgaria, Romania, and the three Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania). The proposals would address the problems caused by the wave of refugees.
In the joint letter, the ministers of the nine countries call on the European Commission to extend the deadline for the completion of the current projects, specifically to extend by one year the deadline for beneficiaries to meet their payment obligations,”
The nine countries are also asking the European Commission to approve the programs for the new EU budget period (2021-2027) as soon as possible, which would allow the measures to be financed.
The wave of refugees from Ukraine is affecting the EU Member States in different ways, and there is a need for mutual solidarity to better care for refugees, wrote the Czech Ministry in a statement.
According to Bartos, the joint measures requested from Brussels were initiated by the Czech Republic but will be coordinated by Estonia in the coming period, as the Czech Republic will take over the EU presidency on July 1.
Recently, Finance Minister Mihály Varga said that the Hungarian government is urging greater contribution by the European Union to financial burdens linked to migration. Varga said that Hungary had spent 600 billion forints (EUR 1.6bn) on protecting the southern border and 40 billion forints on managing the Ukrainian refugee situation. The EU contribution covers only 2 percent of the costs, he added.
However, according to a recent decision by the Council of the EU, the Member States will receive a total of EUR 3.5 billion (around 1,300 billion forints) more this year in order to facilitate the hosting of refugees fleeing Ukraine.
Featured image via János Nemes/MTI