Hungary has been granted exemption from the European Union’s gas price cap, “which will therefore not jeopardise secure gas supplies” to the country, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said on the sidelines of an EU summit in Brussels in the early hours of Friday.
“We have managed to protect Hungary’s interests,” the prime minister wrote in a Facebook message. Orban said the European Commission’s energy proposals had “posed the greatest danger” for Hungary. “Adopting them would have risked a stoppage of gas deliveries to the country within days,” he said.
That threat, he said, had been averted: “Hungary was not left alone and managed to negotiate a fair deal”. “We agreed that even if a gas price cap were introduced in Europe, it would not impact the long-term agreements without which Hungary’s gas supplies would be made impossible overnight,” Orbán said.
Participants in the summit also agreed that if there were joint gas purchasing in Europe, it would not be mandatory for Hungary.
“That’s important because we can only bring domestic energy prices down with more sources of supply at our disposal, with more competition on the Hungarian energy market,” he added.
Orbán: Good chance of ‘asserting Hungarian national interests’
Before, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has said he sees a “good chance” of asserting Hungarian national interests at the EU summit in Brussels. In a video uploaded to Facebook on Thursday, the prime minister said the key question was “how to combat skyrocketing energy prices”.
Orbán said some elements of EU proposals were “in stark contrast” to Hungary’s national interests, such as jointly procuring energy on a mandatory basis and a common European price cap, as extant contracts for Hungary’s gas deliveries would be invalidated and the country would be left without energy supplies.
The prime minister said other leaders of EU member states were similarly minded as Hungary, “so chances are high that we’ll be able to assert Hungarian national interests tonight,” he added.
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