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Russia – Ukraine. Natural gas, sanctions. Viktor Orban, Prime Minister of Hungary, comments

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The Russian invasion of Ukraine is underway. – The European Union embargo on Russian gas imports would damage the European economy, which is already struggling with soaring inflation caused by higher energy prices – Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on state radio on Friday. The head of the Hungarian government also spoke about higher fuel prices for trucks with foreign registration plates.

The government in Budapest has introduced a limit fuel prices in mid-November last year, and then in February this year. introduced price restrictions for some food products. According to the government, these solutions allowed for a reduction inflation by 5-6 percentage points. These solutions are expected to expire next month.

Inflation in Hungary

Current price restrictions on Hungary valid until July 1. The Hungarian Prime Minister emphasized that he would like the price limits to be kept. However, he added that further talks were necessary before the final decision on their extension is made.

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“There is a high probability that the war will drag on and the year 2023 will be full of uncertainty and sadness,” he said Viktor Orban in a radio interview. – The world will suffer from war and its economic consequences – he assessed.

The Hungarian prime minister said that a possible EU embargo on Russian gas imports would damage the European economy, which is already struggling with soaring inflation caused by higher energy prices.

PAP / Maciej Zieliński

Orban also said that without restricting the prices of fuel, some staple foods and energy for private consumers, inflation in Hungary, which stood at 10.7 percent in May, could rise to 15-16 percent. According to the head of the Hungarian government, were it not for the fuel price limit to HUF 480 (around PLN 5.57), a liter of fuel would cost around 700 to 900 HUF at the station.

Fuel price limits – European Commission warns

Earlier this year, Hungary introduced a rule that trucks over 7.5 tonnes and trucks with foreign registration plates over 3.5 tonnes will not be able to refuel subsidized fuel at HUF 480 per liter, but will have to pay the price. market.

EU internal market commissioner Thierry Breton announced on Wednesday that the government in Budapest must suspend discriminatory fuel prices. Otherwise, Hungary is threatened with court proceedings. “This is an exceptional situation and we have to do what these situations require,” said Viktor Orban. – In such times as the present, it is obligatory to deviate from the general rules – he said.

Hungarian energy company MOL called on Thursday for a gradual withdrawal from this solution. MOL CEO Zsolt Hernadi told local media that a gradual lifting of the fuel price cap will be necessary to ensure long-term security of supply.

– It all depends on the war. If there is war, there is inflation, said Viktor Orban. “If there is peace, we will be able to withdraw these funds sooner.” If there is war, we cannot, or we can do it very slowly, stated the head of the Hungarian government.

Main photo source: IAN LANGSDON / EPA / PAP

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