Sanctions Drain EUR 10 bln From Hungarian Economy, Orbán Says


Image by Alexandros Michailidis /

Sanctions policy is draining EUR 10 billion from the Hungarian economy a year, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said at the Hungarian Standing Conference, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

Orbán claimed the sanctions policy is costing the central budget some EUR 4 bln, money that could be used for social policy, wage rises, or tax cuts, while the economy has to "swallow" a EUR 6 bln loss.

"In this light, Hungary's anti-sanction policy does not appear to be excessive," he added.

Orbán said Hungary will not accept joint borrowing by European Union member states to assist Ukraine. He recommended member states decide how much they want to contribute to Ukraine's operation, then divide that up among themselves in a "proportional, fair" manner. 

Hungary could contribute an annual HUF 60 bln-70 bln from the central budget in the framework of a bilateral agreement with Ukraine, he added.

Hungary condemns Russia's aggression and is assisting the Ukrainian people, but it is not prepared to place the interests of Ukraine over its own, Orbán added.

The PM said Hungary is on the threshold of signing an agreement on its EU support for the 2021-2027 funding cycle, but "can't be sure what will be paid or what will be suspended". That funding comes to net HUF 800 bln a year, compared to Hungary's GDP of HUF 62 trillion, he added.

He said Hungary "must be given" its funding from the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) as those resources are from joint EU credit on which member states earlier agreed how to distribute. That funding can be "delayed at most", he added.

Orbán said EU funding can't be used as a "tool for blackmail", adding that "we can't be backed into a corner".

Hungary could finance its program for the greening of its economy from global markets, getting credit from countries such as China, he explained.


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