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Jul 07, 2017

Hungary defends itself against criticisms from The Economist newspaper

Hungary's government spokesman said that contrary to the narrative of The Economist, democracy is doing just fine in Hungary. Elections remain free and fair

Hungary has defended itself against criticisms of its politics by The Economist newspaper in the United Kingdom.

Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács said that much has changed in the world since the heroic speech of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in 1989, but the prime minister’s cause remains the same: a strong and independent Hungary at home in a strong Europe.

The spokesman said that contrary to the narrative of The Economist, democracy is doing just fine in Hungary. Elections remain free and fair, he added.

The difference is that prime minister has dared to defend Hungary’s national interest since coming back into power in 2010, ruffling some feathers, he added.

When European bigwigs advised us to take severe austerity measures, Hungary instead pursued its own reform path. It was dismissed as “unorthodox” but today Hungary’s GDP growth is one of the best in Europe. The deficit is under control, debt is on the decline and unemployment is at record lows, he added.

The spokesman added that the prime minister has dared to oppose the EU on migration, challenging the compulsory resettlement quota. Hungary has insisted on tough border security, opposed policies that would encourage migrants to come to Europe, and proposed asylum-processing centers in hotspots outside Europe. The number of illegal entries crossing the Hungarian section of the Schengen border has now declined to almost zero.