Is Hungary ready to leave the EU?

EU plan for aid without Poland and Hungary, Warsaw suggests waiver of veto

Poland indicated on Thursday that it would not veto the EU financial package if the international community made a declaration on the rule of law. Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Gowin said on Thursday after a meeting with representatives of the EU Commission that it was clear that the veto would also damage his country. Instead of changing the rule of law, his government could also accept a declaration by the EU member states that this would only apply to the correct use of EU funds.

The Commission did not initially provide an opinion. However, the compromise on the financial package, which Poland and Hungary had originally agreed to, which was painstakingly negotiated in the summer, already provides for exactly what Poland is now demanding. The EU Parliament is against such a restriction. Poland's Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki later rejected the proposal made by his own deputy anyway. You won't change your position, he said.

Thumbscrews tightened

Poland and Hungary have so far blocked a package worth around 1.8 trillion euros, which also includes the Corona reconstruction fund with a volume of 750 billion euros. The two states are bothered by the fact that the payment of the corona funds should be linked to the rule of law, for example independence from the judiciary and the media. The other EU countries want to enforce this. Poland and Hungary should also receive funds from the Corona aid pot. The German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz had recently been optimistic about reaching an agreement quickly.

Above all, however, the EU had previously increased the pressure on Warsaw and Budapest. As the "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung" reports, the Commission is working on disbursing the 750 billion reconstruction fund, which is urgently awaiting the states in the south of the EU, outside of the EU directives, for example by means of bilateral agreements. In this model, Poland and Hungary would go away completely empty-handed. Poland would forego 23.1 billion euros, Hungary 6.2 billion. According to the "FAZ", however, it is more likely to create a mechanism within the EU in which states can voluntarily participate - but which would include the rule of law criteria that Poland and Hungary reject. (red, APA, December 4, 2020)