Orban seeks flexible contract on Russian gas
Budapest, February 4 (MTI) – Hungary needs to conclude a flexible agreement with Russia concerning gas supplies, one whose term can be extended, Prime Minister Viktor Orban told commercial HirTV on Wednesday.
The agreement, which will replace the current one expiring this year, should be negotiated with respect to uncertainties around oil and gas prices in the long run, Orban said in an interview ahead of a meeting of deputies of the ruling Fidesz-Christian Democrat parties in Mezokovesd.
The government’s utility price reduction programme cannot be maintained unless such a flexible agreement is achieved, he said.
On the subject of European Union-Russia ties Orban said that Hungary should seek to maintain the “most fair and balanced relations possible” with Russia. He added that this was his reason for inviting Russian President Vladimir Putin for a visit to Budapest later this month.
Concerning the group meeting, Orban said he expected lawmakers to “place orders” in terms of changes to healthcare, education and welfare services for children.
Referring to a proposal that primary school should be extended by one year, Orban said the initiative was “too strong” and suggested that a decision would not be passed at the meeting. He noted that implementing a programme like that would require a lot of time coordinating interests and convincing parents, children and teachers.
As for healthcare, Orban referred to the developments the government had made, and said that “we now have the hardware”, adding that “the software” should be realised in public health programmes yielding results manifested in daily life.