Hungary rejects the EU’s proposed set of sanctions including an embargo on Russian oil in its current form, Balazs Hidveghi, an MEP of ruling Fidesz, told the BBC on Monday.
“We are rejecting this current set of sanctions because in its current form it is just unacceptable; it is crossing a red line for our country,” Hidveghi said, adding that beside Hungary, a number of other countries in central Europe and also Germany are not in a position to suddenly cut completely the import of Russian oil.
“We cannot wreak havoc on entire industries and stop the functioning of entire businesses and put millions of people out of work,” he said, adding that the decision was hastily made and the sanctions “would harm us more than would harm the Russians whom we want to sanction,”
Hidvéghi said. He said more time was needed to negotiate the details of such a decision.
Asked about the timeframe allowing member states to phase out the import of Russian oil until the end of 2022, Hidveghi said it was a short time for a country like Hungary which is almost completely dependent on the import of Russian oil and has a refinery built for and working with Russian oil.
“More time is needed, more consideration is needed,” the MEP said.
He underscored the importance of diversification in Europe in terms of energy resources and energy dependence.
“We need international contracts that would guarantee the energy security for our people and for our countries and I think Brussels and the EU should play an active, a pro-active part in all that,”
As we wrote last week, three-quarters of respondents would not support Hungary shutting off crude oil and natural gas deliveries from Russia under pressure from the US and the EU, read more details HERE.