Following talks in Brussels with the President of the European Parliament, President Katalin Novák said Hungary is making preparations for the rotating presidency of the European Union Council to be held in the second half of 2024.
President Novák said on Facebook: “I trust that we will have another successful Hungarian presidency in 2024”. Metsola confirmed that she expected the same, Novák added. President Novák also met King Philippe of Belgium in Brussels to discuss “historical and diplomatic ties” between the two countries. Novák said on social media platform X that it had been an honour for her to meet the Belgian ruler. They discussed the European Union Spanish, Belgian, and Hungarian presidencies, she added. Novák presented Philippe with an original menu from the 1880 engagement dinner of Rudolph, heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, and Princess Stephanie of Belgium. Meanwhile, at an earlier meeting with Hungarian MEPs, Novák said: “There are situations in which it is worth setting aside political differences in the interest of a common cause.” Speaking in the Liszt Institute in Brussels, she offered partnership to all Hungarian MEPs. “When it comes to important Hungarian interests, we need to seek an opportunity for joint action to promote those interests.” “A crucial cause now is Hungary’s access to the EU funds it is legitimately entitled to,” Novák said. The MEPs of the ruling Fidesz-Christian Democrat alliance, opposition Social Democrat István Ujhelyi, and MEPs of Romania’s ethnic Hungarian RMDSZ party attended the meeting held behind closed doors. Meanwhile, addressing an event on demographic issues organised by the Egmont Royal Institute for International Relations and the Liszt Institute, the president said Hungary regarded real freedom of choice for families as among the most important fundamental principles, and the Hungarian state strove to give families freedom of choice. She said everything possible needed to be done to close the fertility gap and help couples have as many children as they want.