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Opposition blames government for economic crisis

Opposition parties on Thursday slammed the government, saying it was responsible for the economic and cost of living crisis and the weak forint.

In response to a press conference of Gergely Gulyas, the prime minister’s chief of staff, Socialist Zoltan Vajda told an online press conference that to restore trust in Hungary’s economic policy and stop the “freefall of the forint rate”, the government should “discontinue the war against Brussels”, introduce a comprehensive anti-corruption package and join the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO).

Further, the government should introduce the global minimum corporate tax and work to introduce the euro in the country, he said. Welfare spending should be increased to replace “propaganda expenditures”, he said.

Vajda, who also heads parliament’s budgetary committee, called on the government to “stop ripping off Hungarians and having them pay for inflation and the weak forint”.

Democratic Coalition (DK) spokesman Balazs Barkoczi said the forint had become the worst-performing currency in the world “and it is the Hungarian people and families who will pay the price”.

He told an online press conference that the forint exchange rate against the euro had been near 417 on Wednesday. Other regional currencies including the Polish zloty, the Czech crown and the Romanian leu are “way ahead” and even the Ukrainian hryvnia performs better, he added.

He said the Orban regime’s past twelve years had brought about a weakening of the forint, with its “multi-friendly economic policy”, corruption and Hungary’s growing indebtedness.

Even if the central bank raises the base rate, public debt still remains high and Hungary will not receive “EU funds suspended as a consequence of government corruption,” he added.

Barkoczi blamed Prime Minister Viktor Orban for the “collapse of the forint”, adding that he was not a solution but the problem itself.

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