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A clear standpoint must be represented in respect of the war in Ukraine, but realities must be taken into consideration when making responses, as energy shortages can cause serious economic damage, Hungary’s foreign minister has said.
Péter Szijjártó told a meeting of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris that preparations should be made for a difficult economic situation as a result of Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. In the coming months, all measures that place further burdens on the economy and ordinary people must be avoided, he said. Countries not responsible for the war should not be forced to pay its price, he added. Under current circumstances, all types of tax increase must be avoided, and while the green transition must not be neglected, in the current circumstances it would be an “insane idea” to increase burdens such as introducing a carbon tax on drivers of conventional cars. Szijjártó added that when sanctions and further response measures are planned, additional price increases must be avoided so as to keep inflation under control. Curbs must not endanger secure energy supplies to European countries. “While we must certainly represent a clear position in terms of geopolitical issues and the Ukraine war, realities must also be taken into consideration,” he said.