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Poland and Hungary oppose linking the EU budget to the rule of law on the coordination of the EU’s long-term budget

Poland and Hungary oppose linking the EU budget to the rule of law on the coordination of the EU's long-term budget

viktor orban social media

November 26 Polish Prime Minister Morawiecki paid a one-day visit to Hungary and met with Hungarian Prime Minister Orban. 

The two sides coordinated their positions on the EU’s long-term budget from 2021 to 2027 and the mechanism for linking the budget to the rule of law, and signed a joint statement stating that the evolution of the rule of law into a political tool will weaken the rule of law in the EU.

The statement emphasized that the current dilemma that the EU budget cannot be passed quickly is caused by those who link the rule of law to the EU budget. 

The consensus reached by the rotating presidency of the European Council and the European Parliament on the mechanism for linking the budget to the rule of law is inconsistent with the agreement reached by the heads of state and government of the European Council in July.

The statement stated that turning the rule of law into a political tool will not only not strengthen it, but will weaken the rule of law in the EU. The goal of the two countries is to prevent this mechanism. 

This mechanism bypasses the “European Union Treaty”, does not have clear standards as the basis for sanctions, and does not contain any meaningful procedural guarantees.

△Poland Prime Minister Morawiecki (left) and Hungary Prime Minister Orban (right)

The statement also stated that the two countries are seeking solutions so that all member states can obtain funds as soon as possible. The two countries believe that major changes to the currently proposed mechanism are needed. 

The statement recommends establishing a dual-track process to quickly pass the budget bill. On the one hand, according to the agreement reached in July, the scope of any budget attachments is limited to the protection of EU financial interests. 

On the other hand, it is necessary to discuss the link between the rule of law and EU financial interests within the framework of the European Council. 

If it is decided to link, it should be negotiated on amendments to the treaty in accordance with the relevant procedures stipulated in the European Union Treaty, including holding an intergovernmental meeting.

The European Parliament and the 27 EU member states reached a consensus on a new EU long-term budget from 2021 to 2027 on November 10, but it requires the unanimous approval of the member states.

Poland and Hungary have repeatedly threatened to veto a new round of long-term budget bills due to the mechanism of linking the EU budget with the rule of law. 

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