The Commission ‘has taken the Hungarian election campaign to Brussels’

Last week, the European Commission published the latest country report on Hungary. While we have grown accustomed to certain points of criticism emanating from the European Commission, this latest report, issued a month before Hungary’s parliamentary elections, takes matters much further.

The report represents an “obvious and clear manipulation” and as such the Commission “took the Hungarian election campaign to the EU institutions,” said József Szájer, MEP and Vice-Chair of the EPP Group, at a press conference in Brussels.

“The report has been prepared on a political order. It is an open intervention in Hungary’s election campaign,” he added.

The report is…

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Editorial March 13, 2018


Hungarian EPP delegation and Hungarian Wave host book launch: Creating Balance – the Mission of Economic Policy

Recently, Hungary’s EPP delegation – in cooperation with Brussels-based Magyar Hullám – hosted the launch event for renowned Hungarian economist László György’s latest book Creating Balance – The Mission of Economic Policy. In his book, György delves into the reasons for Hungary’s post-2010 economic success.

“The critics of Hungary’s post-2010 economic policy first said that it will lead to bankruptcy. When the accomplishments started to appear, they said the success will only be temporary. Now, when it produces stability and long-term growth they say it solely feeds on EU money,” said László György, discussing mainstream economists’ take on the…

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Editorial March 8, 2018


A look at what we accomplished in eight years of government

Over the last eight years since Viktor Orbán and the Fidesz-Christian Democrat alliance formed a government in the spring of 2010, Hungary has seen a dynamic period of change. Here are just a few examples, drawn from a list published recently in Magyar Idők of the accomplishments of these Orbán Governments:

Shortly after the Fidesz-KDNP victory in 2010, a catastrophe at the Ajka alumina plant flooded neighboring Hungarian villages with red toxic sludge. The new government cleaned up the spill, repaired the damage and renovated those houses that could be salvaged.

Inheriting an economy that was teetering on the edge…

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Editorial March 8, 2018


Protect Christian cultural heritage

Christian cultural heritage has a universal value for people and societies. Across Europe there are hundreds of thousands churches, the continent’s biggest living museum of architecture, history and faith, what we should preserve as our cultural heritage and source of our identity.

As 2018 is the European Year of Cultural Heritage, the EPP Group Working Group on Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue held a seminar on the importance of Europe protecting Christian cultural heritage on 6 March in the European Parliament. MEP György Hölvényi and MEP Jan Olbrycht, the Co-Chairs of the Working Group hosted the meeting with a group of MEPs working across different…

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Editorial March 7, 2018


Safeguarding European honey production

Determined measures are needed to safeguard European honey production, according to EPP Group MEP Norbert Erdős whose Report on the prospects and challenges of European apiculture is voted today in plenary.

“The cornerstone of the Report is to modify the food labelling system in place and determine the country of origin instead of using a useless and fraud-friendly label such as “blend of EU and non-EU honeys”, said Erdös. Honey from outside the EU and falsely labelled as European is responsible for the purchasing prices halving in value from 2014 to 2016.

“Honey adulteration has to be stopped by…

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March 2, 2018

Minority SafePack

Minority SafePack: More than 700,000 signatures and only 300,000 to go

More than 100 million people live in Europe as national minorities. Many of them enjoy the necessary, basic rights in the country where they reside. But not all. Many ethnic minorities, like the ethnic Hungarians living outside of Hungary in the Carpathian Basin, do not enjoy the same rights. And we can find many such examples across Europe. That’s exactly what the Minority SafePack European Citizens’ Initiative is all about.

Introduced with the Treaty of Lisbon in 2007, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) offers the opportunity for the citizens of Europe to call directly on the European Commission to…

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Editorial February 28, 2018


We should continue our fight to protect the reduction of utility costs

Last Wednesday the European Parliament’s Industry, Research and Energy Committee adopted a legislative package that will define the future of the electricity market. The review of the electricity market regulation and directive is another step towards the unified, consumer-oriented Energy Union and energy markets. “Member States should not lose the possibility to intervene in prices in the energy market in favor of their citizens,” said András Gyürk, head of Hungary’s EPP delegation and member of the Committee.

Compared to the stringency of the rapporteur’s original proposal, we have managed to significantly tone down those sections of the draft that deal…

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András Gyürk February 28, 2018


The UN’s recipe to make migration a fundamental human right

The zero draft of the United Nations’ migration pact blurs the distinction between refugees and migrants and appears to accommodate legal and illegal migration alike as “a source of prosperity, innovation and sustainable development.”

Furthermore, the document, said Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in his State of the Nation speech on Sunday, “asserts that safe and regulated immigration routes must be created in Europe. The UN asserts that it is every European’s duty to help the immigrants coming to their countries to settle and find jobs.” That’s a significant departure.

This draft of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration…

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Editorial February 20, 2018


Frank Füredi: The cultural wars over values resemble the religious wars

In his latest book entitled “Populism and the European Culture Wars,” renowned sociologist Frank Füredi argues that the cultural wars in Europe are about the interaction of Christianity and Islam, the meaning of European culture and the clash between multiculturalism and nationalism. At a book launch event in the European Parliament, hosted by MEP György Schöpflin, Professor Füredi said that behind this antagonism we find conflicts today around national sovereignty and the role of the nation state.

The overarching supranational ideology of the EU’s institutions denounces the idea of national sovereignty as an obsolete and destructive concept, Füredi writes in…

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Editorial February 15, 2018


A transnational list would have created a more distant, less democratic EU

To strengthen the EU, we must all work to close the gap between European institutions and European citizens. That’s the position of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and the one that the Hungarian EPP delegation has advocated for some time. After all, European integration is for the people and not the other way around. Last week’s rejection of the transnational list for EP elections – by an overwhelming majority of MEPs – is absolutely a step in the right direction.
As a result of Brexit, the planned departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union will vacate 73 seats in…

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György Schöpflin February 15, 2018