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May 03, 2018

Hungary's FM: Austria's decision to reduce family supplements is unfair and unjust toward the Hungarian people

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the move will affect 39,000 Hungarian children and has forced a dispute between the two nations

Hungary’s foreign minister has said that a recent decision by the Austrian government to reduce family supplements is unfair and unjust toward the Hungarian people.

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the move will affect 39,000 Hungarian children and has forced a dispute between the two nations.

Austria’s coalition government has issued a decision on making the family supplements payable to foreign citizens working in Austria dependent on price levels. Despite objections from the European Union, future supplements will be linked to the price level of the country in which the children of foreign workers employed in Austria live.

“Hungary’s government always takes action against anyone who treats Hungarians unfairly and unjustly, and the recent decision by the Austrian Government is indeed unfair and unjust towards the people of Hungary,” the foreign minister said.

“Austria is one of our important partners. It is an important ally in a host of issues, but unfortunately we are in dispute with relation to this particular issue,” he added.

The minster said that we cannot accept the fact that despite Hungarians conforming to all tax and contribution payment requirements in Austria they should receive lower family benefits than Austrian citizens who pay exactly the same taxes and contributions.

“This is also a European issue,” the minister said. “Hungary expects Europe’s institutions to enforce European regulations and the European treaties. If the Commission uses a common standard, it must take action against this infringement of European law,” he concluded.