Marton Nagy - Photo:

Economy minister meets EU Commissioner for Internal Market

In preparation for Hungary's EU presidency in the second half of the year, National Economy Minister Marton Nagy on Friday met Thierry Breton, the EU Commissioner for the Internal Market, to discuss the economic challenges brought on by the war between Russia and Ukraine, the EU's competitiveness and industry policy, issues of the internal market and the Hungarian presidency's priorities.

Nagy said Hungary would aim to boost the common market and industry, cut supply chains, and to bolster digitalisation and modernisation. It would especially support SMEs, the establishment of an internationally competitive financial services sector, and the mobilisation of labour market reserves, he said.

Nagy told Breton that Hungary saw developing the EU’s industry as a priority, and was open to picking up talks on a comprehensive EU industrial strategy, which were discontinued in 2020 excepting details such as the Green Deal, which had been adopted separately.

Hungary wants to foster connectivity and avoid blocks forming within the EU, Nagy added.

Noting that the EU had no leading role in tech-driven new industrial sectors, Nagy promoted an approach where the government works to “create a coherent framework” for proposals from industry players. The strategy should focus on sectors such as e-vehicles and AI, he added.

Nagy and Breton agreed that promoting the EU’s competitiveness was a priority, and that was only possible through cooperation, the ministry said. The bloc will have to break down energy prices and curb its energy dependency. The bloc’s green transition should be bolstered by a transitional use and development of nuclear energy, he said.

He also called on the EU to develop a response to the US’s Inflation Reduction Act.

Nagy and Breton also pledged to strengthen cooperation in cutting red tape for economic players and member states’ governments, and said that the internal market should be kept free from new limitations, the statement said.

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