Bloomberg quoted a senior Polish government official as saying on the 9th that after meeting on the 8th, the leaders of Poland and Hungary have agreed to compromise and stop exercising the veto power over the EU’s budget package of up to 1.8 trillion euros. Earlier, EU officials warned that in the absence of breakthrough progress, the EU may ignore the boycotts of Hungary and Poland and launch the Economic Recovery Fund.
On November 10, the 27 member states of the European Union reached a consensus on a long-term budget for the period from 2021 to 2027, which includes a seven-year long-term budget of 1.1 trillion euros and a 750 billion euros of COVID-19 recovery fund, but this budget needs the unanimous approval of member states before it can be adopted.
On November 16, Hungary and Poland voted against the budget on the grounds that the EU insisted that funding be linked to rule of law norms. EU officials have warned recently that if Poland and Hungary do not withdraw their objections before Wednesday, the EU will launch a “Plan B”, which ignores the boycotts of Hungary and Poland and distributes the recovery fund to 25 other member states to “cut off confessions” to Hungary and Poland, thus blocking their veto power.
Germany’s Frankfurter Report reported on the 9th that the meeting of Bosnia and Hungarian leaders held on the 8th was the second visit of Hungarian Prime Minister Orbán to Warsaw in eight days. After the meeting, Orbán told the media that the debate on the rule of law must be separated from the EU budget and the coronavirus recovery fund, and Hungary and Poland will win the final victory.
Orbán was optimistic that at the EU leaders summit, which began on Thursday, the parties will reach a reunification and end the dispute, which is now only “one centimeter away” from the goal. Polish Deputy Prime Minister Govin said on the 9th that an agreement had been reached with the German presidency of the European Union, which will be submitted to other EU member states, and the final agreement may be finalized by Friday.
This news has not been confirmed by the heads of government of Germany, Poland and Hungary. Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau told local radio on the 9th that a compromise is possible, but if no agreement can be reached at the next two summits, another EU leaders’ summit may need to be arranged this year, or postponed to next year, when Portugal will take over the EU presidency, which will be more than Germany. Take a more moderate response.
According to Reuters on the 9th, German Chancellor Merkel said on the same day that the EU is looking for a way to lift the veto power of Hungary and Poland over the EU budget while maintaining the rule of law mechanism. Timmermans, the first vice chairman of the European Commission, also said that in this impasse, the EU will not give in, and that “conceeding on the rule of law will mean abandoning the EU’s common values”.
Bloomberg said that without the support of Hungary and Poland, although the economic recovery fund can still be launched, it may take several months, and the EU will have to “frugally” from January next year.
Meanwhile, Poland and Hungary face the loss of the 180 billion euros allocated from the EU in the next few years, which has been the main driving force for economic growth and the improvement of people’s living standards in the two countries.