Hungary’s parliament has approved amendments to the act on higher education that will require foreign colleges and universities in Hungary to operate under an intergovernmental agreement and to have a campus in the country in which they are based.
According to MTI, the bill was passed in a speeded-up procedure with a vote of 123 in favor and 38 against. There were no abstentions.
The Central European University (CEU), which is accredited in the United States but has just one campus, in Budapest, earlier said the changes to the law would make its continued operation in Budapest impossible.
The CEU called the proposed legislation “discriminatory” and said that it “targets CEU directly”. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said there was “no reason for anybody to be nervous” as the Hungarian government would hold talks with the government of the United States on the matter of the CEU.
“The Hungarian government will be guided by goodwill as will most certainly the government of the United States of America,” he added.
A last-minute change moved forward the date for revoking the licences of institutions that fail to comply with the new rules to January 1, 2018 from September 1, 2018.