Hungary PM says no to EU deal if tax harmonisation included
(BUDAPEST) - Hungary will not join any agreement involving tax harmonisation or ending sovereign tax policy, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Thursday, as EU states mulled tougher fiscal rules to save the euro.
"What is sure is that Hungary does not wish to join any agreements which includes tax harmonisation steps, that is, the government is not willing to give up on competitive measures of independent Hungarian tax policy," Orban said after meeting with his Czech counterpart Petr Necas, the Hungarian news agency MTI reported.
Similarly, Necas said that direct or indirect rules on tax harmonisation among European Union member states was not in the interest of the small, export-oriented Czech Republic.
At a summit on December 8-9, all EU states but Britain signalled their willingness to back a tax and budget pact to solve the crisis of the debt-ridden eurozone.
After originally voicing his reluctance, Orban eventually said that Hungary would join the agreement if it was endorsed by parliament.
But the assembly in Budapest will not take any decisions concerning the new fiscal compact "until all details of the agreement are known," Orban insisted Thursday.
Necas, as quoted by the Czech CTK news agency, agreed that: "There are too many uncertainties at the moment."
"The agreement resembles the Yeti: everyone talks about it, and nobody knows what it looks like."
"We prefer this new international treaty to apply to non-eurozone countries only as of the moment they join the eurozone," he added, following disagreements over whether a new deal should be approved by all 27 EU members or only the 17 that share the euro.
In March, Orban already opted out from a eurozone competitiveness pact, saying the country wanted to retain its independence on tax matters.
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