The government is not yet considering easing the border lock of Hungary due to the lack of social immunity. Its timing is highly dependent on the vaccination program of the neighbouring countries, as well as the changes in the number of new infections.
On Tuesday, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó held a meeting with Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde in Budapest that was followed by a joint press conference. The press primarily asked about when the border lock could be lifted and under what conditions. As the Hungarian news portal Turizmus.com reports,
at the press conference, it has been revealed that the government is not yet considering easing the border lock of Hungary.
As the Hungarian Foreign Minister said, this step “is still a little further away, but we hope we will achieve it as well.”
He also added that the decision is also highly dependent on the vaccination program of the neighbouring countries, changes in the number of new infections, as he said the most important thing is “to protect the health of Hungary’s citizens.”
This also explains why the members of Hungarian families living on both sides of the border are not allowed to visit each other for the time being.
Last week, Gergely Gulyás, head of the Prime Minister’s Office, said that the government knows that this is a problem. Still, since the proportion of vaccines in the neighbouring countries is not as high as in Hungary, and the social immunity in Hungary is not yet guaranteed, the government is careful about opening the borders. The Minister also added that
the first step in easing the border locks will be to ensure the entry and exit of Hungarian citizens not only for work but also for visiting relatives.
Another critical question is the conditions under which foreigners will be able to enter the country in the future. It is unknown yet whether the entry will depend on a certain level of vaccination or the introduction of the EU vaccine passport promised for this summer.
Currently, the immunity certificate in Hungary – owned by those who have already been vaccinated or who have gone through the disease – do not release the quarantine obligation at the border crossing.