Brussels (MTI) – Representatives of 27 European Union member states have agreed on a joint position to be represented at Brexit talks, Hungary’s state secretary for EU affairs said on Thursday.
Szabolcs Takács told MTI after an EU ministerial meeting in Luxembourg that the EU heads of state and government are scheduled to approve the directives for the talks on Saturday. This will give strong authorisation to Michel Barnier, the European Commission’s point man for Brexit talks with London, to start negotiations and strongly represent the bloc’s position, he added.
By approving the joint EU position at Thursday’s meeting, the government has proved that it is taking a constructive approach while representing national interests, not only when it comes to infringement issues, but also concerning dialogue on Europe’s common future, he said.
Hungary’s position on the Brexit talks is essentially to protect the rights and interests of the more than one hundred thousand Hungarians living in the UK, he said. Hungary trusts that a fair and reasonable agreement can be reached between the EU and London that duly respects the interests of Hungarian economic players too, considering that after its exit Britain will be one of the EU’s largest trading partners.
Hungary believes that the EU must work closely together with the UK in the area of defence and security, too, after the divorce, he said. The migration crisis of recent years has shown that more effort is needed to protect external borders. Costs should not be spared to the detriment of the security of the European people, he added.