President of the EUropean Commission José Manuel Barroso has once again responded to communication by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, expressing a view that the time has come to "be constructive" as concerns the government's unorthodox policy line on the status of the central bank and Hungary's finacial stability, EC Spokesperson Joe Hennon said.
Without going into the details of Barroso's reply to Orbán, the spokesperson said the EC President believes it was time to be "constructive and avoid any escalation of the situation."
Hennon said "in-depth" examination of the central bank law is currently underway in Brussels. The European Commission is going to assess the legal impact of new regulations enacted by Hungary's Parliament.
In recent days the EC has reiterated its concerns to Hungarian authorities, the spokesperson said, adding that the Commission is still ready to give assistance to Hungary in fully applying EU law.
Two weeks ago, the Commission announced replies by Hungary's Prime Minister and authorities were being scruitinized by EC officials in Brussels. According to the announcement, the concerns voiced by EC Predisent José Manuel Barroso, Commissioner for Economic Affairs Olli Rehn and Commissioner for Justice Viviane Reding, as well as Hungary's responses, concerns issues of such great importance that they require in-depth investigation. This assessment is currently in progress, and is to be completed within the shortest possible time. Once the results are available, the Commission will determine the steps to be taken.
The details of Hungary's reply were discussed neither at that time nor at any time since then. However PM Orbán has made it clear in recent statements that he responded to Barroso's entreaties to withdraw the two controversial bills in the negative. He emphasized that all of the bills Hungary was about to make into law were compliant with European values and legal framework.
According to the latest information from Brussels, no decision has yet been made as to whether or when talks with Hungary about IMF/EU financial assistance will be resumed. The EC has reminded that informal preliminary talks were already underway a few weeks ago, however these "had to be interrupted" due to difficulties caused by the Financial Stability Act and the Central Bank Act. The decision to walk away from the talks was made by Rehn personally.
As concerns Reding's scope of authority, a reply by Hungary's Minister for Justice Tibor Navracsics (who also doubles as Deputy to PM Orbán) was sent to Brussels after the EC Vice President made a formal requrest for information concerning Hungary'a plans to overhaul the judiciary and review the role of the Data Protection Commissioner.
Last Friday, news of a reply by EC President José Manuel Barroso to Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán appeared on newswire MTI. An official announcement of the reply was made by EC Spokesperson Joe Hennon who did not go into the details of the reply.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 03 January 2012 08:49