As a minister of state responsible for European affairs it is becoming increasingly difficult for me to read articles about Hungary without thinking of possible conspiracies aimed against my country, or suspecting the authors and the foreign politicians they quote of complete ignorance.
"During the past two years the Hungarian government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban has been accused on several occasions of being in breach of fundamental rights, of endangering democracy and the freedom of the press, and of creating a situation where certain ethnic groups – the Roma, for example – could not feel safe.
These false accusations reached a watershed this past week during debates in the European Parliament on the so-called Tavares report, which accused Hungary of being in breach of EU values through recent changes in its constitutional and legal framework.
However, those formulating these allegations – both previously and in parliament last week – failed to cite even one concrete example of supposed wrongdoing to support their case. Furthermore, in most cases they turned out to be unfamiliar both with Hungarian history and with the political situation here – and it seemed they do not endeavour to know better. (...)
The Tavares report paints an image of an unfriendly country, lacking the proper rule of law, which could deter genuine foreign investors from evaluating Hungary properly. (...)
In 2010, my government obtained a two-thirds mandate from voters to complete the change of the system – both in economic and political terms. This demanded unprecedented legislative efforts, which naturally meant that mistakes were made along the way and that some political and economic interests were hurt as well.
However, three years on, we can report numerous accomplishments. We have reduced sovereign debt and unemployment, we have put the public finances in order and, after nine long years, we have exited the EU’s excessive deficit procedure. Economic growth has also picked up during the past quarter – something not many EU member states can boast of.
We are standing on our own feet, financing ourselves from the market, and we are not in need of external financial support – facts that, sadly, we rarely read about in the European press."