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When Brussels approved the sanctions against Russia this past summer, “this was not what they promised”, ruling Fidesz’s parliamentary group leader said on Sunday, adding that Europeans had been “deceived”. In addition to this being an economic problem, it is also a moral and political one, Máté Kocsis told public broadcaster Kossuth Radio. The European Union is facing a level of inflation not seen in decades, he said. This has a serious effect on the bloc’s eastern and southern member states, including the central European Visegrad Group, he said, adding that inflation, rising energy prices, the war in Ukraine and the related sanctions were all closely linked. “The Brussels elite even fails to realise that the sanctions have made Russia richer and Europe poorer,” Kocsis said. Rising energy prices have generated Russia 158 billion euros in revenues, half of which had been paid by the EU, he said. Kocsis said EU decision-makers had insisted that the sanctions would cause no harm to Europe, “yet Germany now has a foreign trade deficit, which until now had only happened twice since the second world war”. In Hungary and other countries, the three to four-fold rise in energy prices has pushed inflation to 15-20%, he said. Concerning the government’s decision to extend the price caps on fuel and basic foodstuffs, Kocsis said that without the price caps, inflation could be up to 50% higher. These decisions protect the economy, businesses and the people, he added. European leaders, he said, should admit that the only solution would be to lift the energy sanctions.