With the withdrawal of the United Kingdom, Hungary has lost an important ally inside the European Union

2020. 06. 18.

On 18 June, the European Parliament has adopted a recommendation on the partnership agreement with the United Kingdom governing future relations.

Kinga Gál, Fidesz MEP stated after the vote: “With the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, Hungary has lost an important ally within the EU. At the same time we respect the decision of the British citizens and we hope that a partnership agreement will be reached in the best interests of the citizens of both parties. The most important goal for us is to ensure that the rights of Hungarians living in Great Britain are protected. We are all interested in the strong and functional relationship between the EU and Great Britain after Brexit also.”

Enikő Győri, Fidesz MEP told referring the vote: “The report approved today is yet again a sign of the Parliament’s role-confusion; it is not the Parliament’s competence to draft a wish list full of technical details. It is the task of the Commission to conduct the negotiations based on the mandate from the Council. Parliament should provide guidance; it should set out the principles for the negotiating parties in line with the interests of our citizens.” The EPP MEP stated: “We must stop pretending that Brexit has never happened. The decision of the UK citizens to leave the EU should be respected. What we can rightfully demand from the UK is to endorse the level playing field and adjust to the EU’s economic regulation in order to get access to its internal market of 446 million people.

László Trócsányi, Fidesz MEP stated in connection with the vote: “It is clearly in the interest of Hungary and Hungarian citizens to have a partnership agreement on future relations with the UK that provides the highest possible legal certainty and economic predictability for all stakeholders, parties and citizens. An important part of the settlement was the previously concluded Withdrawal Agreement, which provides adequate support on the most important issues, but only the partnership agreement can provide long-term stability for all parties. Our goal is a cooperation with the UK in good faith, based on mutual trust and respect.” Regarding substantive issues, the Hungarian EPP MEP remarked: “I consider it important that judicial cooperation in security, law enforcement and criminal matters, as well as judicial cooperation in civil and family matters, need to be an integral part of the partnership agreement, as the most important thing for both parties is to guarantee legal certainty to the citizens.”

The Hungarian MEPs agreed to appreciate the work of the European Commission’s Task Force for Relations with the United Kingdom, chaired by Chief Negotiator Michael Barnier, whose task they considered to be a work of historic significance.

Background: Drafting the partnership agreement with the United Kingdom governing future relations included recommendations from 19 committees of the European Parliament, providing a summary of the European Parliament’s position on the negotiating points. In its recommendation, the European Parliament draws attention to the need to be prepared for the UK’s exit from the internal market and customs union at the end of the transitional period, regardless of the outcome of the negotiations and for the economic and other consequences of not reaching an agreement. It notes that during high-level talks on 15 June, the UK indicated that it did not intend to extend the transition period, however, both sides made a political commitment to continue the negotiations much more intensively than before. The European Parliament insists that the agreement on the new relations between the EU and the United Kingdom must be coherent and geared to the geographical proximity of the two parties and the high degree of economic convergence between them.