Hungary and Poland cast in their veto to the recovery fund

Pressure on Hungary Y Poland to stop vetoing the EU budget and the recovery fund, a financial package of 1.8 trillion euros key to revitalizing the European economy, it continues to grow but not even the Hungarian prime minister, Viktor Orbán, nor his Polish counterpart, Mateusz Morawiecki, they give their arm to twist. Both have reaffirmed this Thursday in their position during a meeting in Budapest which has concluded with a total row closure. “We are determined to keep our positions aligned. Neither Poland nor Hungary will accept any proposal that is unacceptable to the other (party) & rdquor; and they will only move, have warned, if there is a “substantial modification & rdquor; of the mechanism that conditions European funds to respect the rule of law.

The impasse, they allege in a joint statement, is neither the fault of Warsaw nor Budapest, but has been created “by those who have established a link between the rule of law and the budget of the EU& rdquor; because the Member States already knew what could happen. “Our position has been clear from the beginning of the negotiation of the Commission’s proposal in 2018. It was known that conditionality entailed the risk of blocking the approval process of the Multiannual Financial Framework and the Next Generation EU financial package (the recovery plan ) & rdquor ;, justify.

Orbán and Morawkiecki, who have appeared without accepting questions from the press, have also insisted that the conditionality mechanism agreed between the six-monthly Presidency of the EU, which leads Germany, and the European Parliament does not reflect the political agreement reached by the 27 European leaders at the summit at the end of July and which not only will not strengthen but will “undermine the rule of law in the EU by degrading it to a political instrument & rdquor; with a conditionality that skips the Treaty, it applies vague definitions and ambiguous terms, which does not have “clear criteria & rdquor; for the application of sanctions and “without significant procedural guarantees & rdquor ;.

“Our countries have acted and continue to act on the basis of loyal cooperation and solidarity. We are ready to contribute to a solution to the current situation & rdquor; but “it will require a substantial modification of the currently proposed mechanism & rdquor ;, they warn. A demand that collides head-on with the position of the European Parliament and of many member states who have announced that they will not move a millimeter and that they are not willing to reopen a negotiation that they consider closed.

Intergovernmental conference

The solution, suggest the controversial tandem, is to start a process in “two ways”. On the one hand, limiting budgetary conditionality only to the protection of the Union’s financial interests. On the other, open a debate in the European Council on whether conditionality should be established. “If that is the decision, then the procedures provided for in the treaties should be considered, including the convening of an intergovernmental conference, to negotiate the necessary modification of the Treaty & rdquor ;, they propose ignoring that there was an agreement in July which they now deny.

And it is that, in the opinion of both, the only legally valid mechanism that exists to protect the values ​​established in Article 2 of the Treaty is Article 7, the procedure that allows sanctioning a country in case of a clear risk of serious violation and that It has only been activated twice in history: precisely against Hungary by the European Parliament and against Poland by the Commission.

The staging in Budapest shows that the attempts of the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, for unlocking the situation before the December 10-11 summit they have not been successful. If a solution is not found in time, the result will be a delay in the arrival of European funds, a problem for countries like Spain what do you expect to receive 140,000 millions in the coming years and has budgeted 27,000 million in the 2021 budget. The Secretary of State for the EU, Juan González-Barba, will travel to Warsaw next week to try to convince the Polish government. “They have to start a recapitalization exercise & rdquor; because “it does not take anyone anywhere, neither to the EU nor to them & rdquor ;, he warned during an appearance in the joint Congress-Senate committee.

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