Hungary and Poland want to build a strong Europe and contribute to reforms aimed at Europe’s peaceful development, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, on his first official foreign visit following his re-election, said in Warsaw.
On the topic of the European Union budget, Orbán said the positions of Hungary and Poland were close but some other countries “have a very different view”. “We want to protect our farmers’ interests,” he said at a joint press conference with Matusz Morawiecki, his Polish counterpart. “Reducing the farm budget is not on: we don’t object to establishing new funds – since new tasks are always emerging – but this should not be at the expense of existing funds.”
Orbán said that difficult issues, such as migration, had been discussed at his meeting with Morawiecki. He said this was the most important issue regarding national sovereignty: who decides who gets to live within a country’s territory. The prime minister said Hungary was under strong pressure by people in Brussels who wanted to conclude the migration issue before the EU summit in June. This will happen only if the EU plan meets the Hungarian government’s expectations, he said, adding that decisions on migration should be left to the new European Parliament to be elected next year.
EU market more important than funds
Orbán said in Warsaw that the European Union was important for Hungary because of its markets rather than its funds. What’s most important is to have a common market with fair competition, he added. He called for a “future-oriented” EU budget, adding that the “old” EU members “are actually profiting from us instead of giving money to us” because a large part of the money granted to Hungary “actually returns to the countries that contribute it”.
Orbán with his Polish counterpart, Matusz Morawiecki in Warsaw. Photo: Koszticsák Szilárd/ MTI.
Meanwhile, Orbán thanked Poland and his Polish counterpart for their support granted to Hungary and to him personally over the past years. “Central Europe values friendships highly,” Orbán said, adding that the Polish prime minister’s recent visit to Hungary to give him encouragement in the last days of the “fierce election campaign” would not be forgotten. Hungary, he said, is learning a lot from recent developments in Poland and gaining courage regarding matters such as Poland’s family policy. Hungary will seek to adopt that policy, he added.
Orbán also noted that the “Stop Soros” bill and a related constitutional amendment proposal will be submitted to parliament as soon as the new government is formed. The Stop Soros bill was one of the ruling Fidesz party’s most important election promises and the Hungarian people voted to support it, he said. “We will implement everything we promised.” Ministers started on working on the bill at the end of last week and the main aspects of the planned constitutional amendment and Stop Soros are ready, he added.