Hungary Ready To Unblock Aid To Ukraine

Reports from Politico suggest Hungary may lift its blockade on EU assistance to Ukraine, marking a potential breakthrough ahead of the special European Council meeting on February 1 in Brussels.

However, Budapest's willingness to unblock aid comes with stipulations. Hungary seeks an annual review of the aid package, which totals 50 billion euros over four years. This approach would grant Prime Minister Viktor Orbán the opportunity to exercise yearly vetoes or negotiate terms with Brussels.

In a recent meeting of budget experts from the 27 EU nations and in written communication to the Belgian presidency of the EU Council, Hungary proposed an allocation of 12.5 billion euros per annum to Ukraine, comprising loans and grants. This aligns with the European Commission's mid-term review of the Community budget, totaling the proposed 50 billion euros.

Politico notes this move represents a significant shift in Hungary's stance, which had previously resisted allocating interest-free loans from the European budget to Kyiv.

Nevertheless, skepticism persists among certain diplomats who question the viability of an annual decision-making process. One EU diplomat expressed concerns about the lack of predictability for Ukraine, emphasizing the multi-annual nature of the financial framework.

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