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PUBLIC OPINION ON SANCTIONS ‘IMPORTANT’

The government considers it vital to gauge public opinion on European Union sanctions against Russia as ordinary people are the ones effected by them, according to the prime minister's chief of staff.
 

The cabinet on Wednesday approved the ruling Fidesz party’s proposal to launch a “National Consultation” public survey on the sanctions, Gergely Gulyás told a government press briefing. The government will present the survey’s questions in detail in the coming days, he added. Gulyás said Europe was in a “uniquely difficult situation”, mainly because the war in Ukraine and the EU’s related sanctions on Russia had led to a surge in energy prices. Because of this, families and businesses in Europe are forced to pay a “sanctions surcharge” on energy, which often translates to a four to five-fold increase in energy bills, he said. The government’s decision to keep the cap on household energy bills up to average consumption saves households an average 181,000 forints (EUR 440), Gulyás said, calling the measure “the biggest support scheme” in Europe.
Gulyás said Brussels had “forced the sanctions on member states” by pledging that they would hurt Russia more than the countries imposing them and bring a quicker end to the war. But the sanctions turned out to have the opposite effect, Gulyás said.