Visegrad Group countries “have nothing to fear” when it comes to the rule of law, and several audits in the past few years show that Hungary complies with all EU requirements, an official of the prime minister’s office told a press conference on Thursday in Brussels.
The European Commission has proposed steps to protect the European Union‘s budget from financial risks resulting from member states’ failure to observe the rule of law.
At a press conference on the 2021-2027 EU budget, Szabolcs Takács, the state secretary for EU affairs, said that Hungary and the other countries in the Visegrad Group were ready for talks if the mechanism proposed by the European Commission complied with the EU’s basic treaties and if the measures applied to all countries equally. But the V4 countries reject the application of double standards on this issue, Takács said.
Takács said it was important to make a considered decision in light of the current imbalances in the area of payments into the system. “It would be unfortunate if a concept arose whereby central and eastern European countries proportionally pay more into the EU budget while their cohesion and farm funding is cut,” he said.
It is in the interest of all member states that the budget gets to the point of being approved only when a proposal is made that is good for all member states and the European Union, too, he said, adding that the budget should rise to new challenges and ensure that the EU is safe, competitive and dynamic. The Visegrad Group is open to talks on allocating funds for new challenges and is ready to assess new proposals. But the V4 countries will not agree to the transferral of national governments’ decision-making powers to the EU, he said.