European Commission has proposed to withdraw €7.5bn (184bn crowns) from European Union funds from Hungary, citing inadequate fight against corruption and problems with public contract allocation . In recent weeks, the Hungarian government has made some concessions, for example promising to set up an anti-corruption agency, but so far not enough. If Budapest improves the situation within her two months, she will not lose her money.

Hungary could lose a lot of money from the EU if it doesn’t meet some EU requirements. The European Commission has proposed to withdraw her €7.5bn (184bn crowns) from EU funds due to its inadequate fight against corruption and problems with allocating public contracts.

European Budget Commissioner Johannes Hahn said on Sunday: “EU officials have sent a proposal to member states for approval, which will allow Budapest to take about a third of its money from the Cohesion Fund. can be stolen,” he said. Hungary could become the first EU member state to lose money due to rules making withdrawals from her EU budget subject to adherence to rule of law principles. Proposals must be approved by a majority of member states.

Union bodies have long criticized Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s government’s commitment to justice, Hungary’s restrictions on media pluralism and minority rights, and restrictions on the activities of non-governmental organizations and academic freedom. In a resolution approved on Thursday, MEPs agreed that Hungary is no longer a full democracy and called on the commission to take swift action. Confiscation of monies due to questionable distribution of EU funds passed on to people connected with Orban.

“We cannot come to the conclusion that the EU budget is adequately protected. In addition to corruption and public procurement, there are also shortcomings in the independent work of investigative or judicial authorities, or in resolving possible conflicts of interest. said Hahn. He said Hungary recently tried to propose changes to the law to address the commission’s objections, but has yet to implement the measures.

A proposal to confiscate the funds will be given to the Member States headed by the Czech Presidency. Hahn said they would take him up to three months to make a decision. At the same time, Hungary has promised to show the Commission how it will fulfill its obligations by 19 November. Union leaders will evaluate the results and decide on the next course of action.

Jourová believes the threat of losing money will compel Hungary to act

The European Union, despite Hungary and Poland’s objections, agreed two years ago on rules that make use of the budget, which, among other things, depends on the independence of the judiciary. Following last year’s Budapest and Warsaw initiatives, the EU Court of Justice confirmed that such proceedings comply with EU law. Shortly after Hungary’s elections in April, the commission formally initiated the process leading to the withdrawal of the funds by sending a letter pointing out the shortcomings. Today she took her second step.

“I think this could be enough motivation for things to happen,” EC vice-president Věra Jourová, who has long been involved in assessing the rule of law in member states, told journalists. The €7.5bn sum, equivalent to almost 5% of Hungary’s estimated gross domestic product this year, could prompt the Hungarian government to start resolving the issue after years of conflict, she said. rice field.

Until recently, Budapest rejected most of the EU’s dissent and Orban based its domestic political campaigns on criticism of the EU. However, in recent weeks the Hungarian government has made some concessions, promising to set up an anti-corruption agency, for example. In addition, he plans to introduce some legislation next week that will further meet Brussels’ demands.

According to Jourová, the list includes 17 measures, with specific dates for the Hungarian government to implement them. In doing so, Hungary in particular is looking to achieve around €6 billion in unblocking. This has been set aside in the EU Emergency Fund for recovery after the covid pandemic.

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