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Mar 29, 2017

PM Orbán: Europe's future lies in the hands of the V4

The prime minister said he expected that in a matter of years, the V4 would be referred to as “Europe’s strongest engine of growth”. PM Orbán praised the V4 cooperation saying that he believes the four countries are capable of renewing European democracy and the European Union as a whole

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has said the future of Europe lies in the Visegrad Four (V4) grouping of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia. PM Orbán made the remarks during the CEE Innovators Summit in Warsaw, where he was joined by the other V4 leaders.

The prime minister argued that the social and ethnic makeup of western European countries was changing, which he said was a disadvantage. Central European countries on the other hand “protect” themselves from this, PM  Orbán said, adding that “this is a major advantage for us”.

He said the V4 countries still have solid cultural foundations, meaning that they have stayed true to their Christian roots. PM Orbán also argued that in central Europe the kind of people who get ahead are those who prove themselves as opposed to those who try to “beat the system”. This is why central European countries will not turn into “welfare-based” societies, he said. Instead, central European countries are building labor-based societies, the prime minister added, arguing that this, too, was a considerable advantage for central Europe.

“If Europe has a future, then it is primarily in central Europe," PM Orbán said, arguing that western Europe had “baggage” which it would have a hard time dealing with.

The prime minister said he expected that in a matter of years, the V4 would be referred to as “Europe’s strongest engine of growth”. PM Orbán praised the V4 cooperation saying that he believes the four countries are capable of renewing European democracy and the European Union as a whole.

Commenting on Hungary's economy. PM Orbán said that although the country had emerged from a financial crisis, its GDP growth rate is currently around 3 percent, adding that this level of growth was not sufficient enough for Hungary to become a highly developed country. In order to become a highly developed country from a moderately developed one, Hungary will have to achieve an annual growth rate of around 5 percent, PM Orbán said, adding that this would require innovation and a new line of economic thinking.