In an unpublished government decree, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has ordered all ministries to stop all payments, with a few exceptions. Apart from wages, only local governments and social and health institutions can receive transfers, and payments required by international treaties or other laws can be made.
The government will pay wages and normal state benefits and subsidies, but has imposed a payment freeze on everything else in the budget until the end of October. This could hurt those who supply or provide services to the state, but it could also be a difficult autumn for organisations that rely on subsidies, Blikk writes.
Telex understands that the economic directors of the ministries were summoned earlier to be informed orally of the planned measure. They have since received the decision that only the following payments will be exempt from the full payment freeze:
- financing the child welfare, health and public education costs of municipalities and other bodies;
- salaries and other personal allowances;
- expenditure linked to international treaties or other legislation;
- payments due for EU programmes 2014-2020.
What is the reason behind the decision?
Telex also does not know the answer to the question of the justification for Orbán’s order. Although the budget deficit is large (the deficit accumulated by the end of August swelled to HUF 2,872.7 billion [EUR 7 billion], reaching more than 90 percent of the amount approved for the whole year), there is no question of administrative insolvency, napi.hu writes.
Those in the know believe it is more likely to be a control and pressure exercise by Orbán. The move could mainly relate to the fact that, in addition to the special taxes, Economic Development Minister Márton Nagy announced a series of austerity measures in May, but it is questionable how well these have been implemented by the ministries.
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Source: Blikk, Telex, napi.hu
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