Hungary's Orbán says EU budget proposal remains unfair

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The European Union budget needs to be established on a fair basis because its basic concept is no tfair and it includes amendments that seek to re-channel funding from poorer countries to richter member states, said Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in Brussels, after meeting European Council President Charles Michel on Monday.
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Charles Michel has convened an extraordinary EU summit for 20 February to discuss the EU budget, and rumour has it that the heads of government will not be allowed to leave until an agreement is hammered out. Michel's meeting with Orbán constitutes a preparation for that summit.

According to Michel's official schedule, after Orbán he will be meeting the Estonian, Slovakian, Belgian and Italian premiers on Tuesday, and a total of 16 of them by the end of 7 February. 

Orbán told journalists that the next six months will be rather busy, and every issue is still open, including the EU budget beyond 2020, migration, digitalisation and EU enlargement.

As regards the EU's seven-year budget for beyond 2020, he said the draft shows the bad practice applied in the previous seven-year cycle has not been changed. It still contains injustices such as the share of poorer member states from the disbursements by financial funds is still 5% while their population makes up 20% of the total population of Europe. There has not been any improvement in remedying such injustices, he stressed. 

We want a fair budget. If it's there, the Hungarians will also find their account in it, i.e. the number combinations that are beneficial for them

, said Orbán.

He said on the weekend that there are still major debates and the positions have not converged. According to sources in Brussels, the wiggle room in the creation of the next EU budget is extremely small. Charles Michel has so many positions to harmonise that he cannot really give more or better offers to the Hungarian government. 

Cover photo by European Union, European Council media library, DARIO PIGNATELLI 

This article is part of the work programme titled "The impacts of EU cohesion policy in Hungary - Present and Future" which is carried out by Net Média Zrt., the publisher of Portfolio.hu, between 1st April 2019 and 31st March 2020 with European Union financing. The views in this article solely reflect the opinions of the author. The European Commission as the funding entity does not take any responsibility for the use of information presented in this article.

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