Hungary must not give up its core ambitions and can only sign an agreement for budget financing that will essentially not reduce the government’s economic control and independence, deputy head of the ruling Fidesz party Lajos Kosa said.
The agreement must allow the cabinet to continue its programmes for public debt management, family support, job creation and the modernisation of the pension system, Kosa told public television m1.
The Ministry for National Economy told MTI on Thursday afternoon that Hungary’s government was to hold negotiations on a new type of cooperation with the IMF in the course of scheduled consultations.
Kosa said “what the socialist governments have done in the past, to practically have the IMF write a complete government programme and then implement that without reservations – taking away 13th month pensions and 13th month salaries, introducing a whole bunch of austerity measures, intending to introduce a general property tax that would also apply to home owners – this will not happen because it goes against our principles.”
Asked whether planned deal was a precautionary loan agreement, Kosa said “no, what we are talking about is that cooperation with the IMF is a matter of economic policy consideration” if they do not harm our principles. Such high level of uncertainty has overcome Europe that it is advisable to rethink the tactical steps of economic policy, he added.
No matter how Hungary has extremely promising figures on economic growth in the first three quarters, no matter how everyone said the Hungarian budget deficit could be kept under 3 percent and even though Hungary has been systematically implementing its undertakings in line with the Szell Kalman Plan, “all of this was not enough to change the assessment of the forint.” Kosa said. This is why it’s necessary to resort to means that can manage this “nervous atmosphere,” he added.
Commenting on the fact that Economy Minister Gyorgy Matolcsy made critical statements about the IMF just three days ago, Kosa said if circumstances change, it is necessary to adapt to them.