In his scheduled radio interview, the Prime Minister said that he would like to see a Hungary in which not a single young person has to change their plans for starting a family and having children on purely financial grounds.
He stressed that this is why, expressed as a percentage of its gross national product – or economic output – the amounts that Hungary is already spending on supporting families are the highest in Europe. Underpinning this, Mr. Orbán said, is the consideration that Hungary’s population is in continuous decline, and if things carry on like this, Hungarians will disappear. He added that throughout history there have always been problems if fewer children are born than are needed for the biological maintenance of a community.
The Prime Minister said that Hungary must therefore provide even more robust support for young people planning on starting families, on having children. This, he said, will in general benefit the whole country, because Hungary will become a happier, more animated country if it is more youthful, and the number of children born is what determines the average age of a country’s population.
He stressed, however, that the leaders of Western European countries believe in a simpler solution: letting in enough migrants to compensate for the shortfall in the indigenous population, thus correcting the numbers and enabling the economy to function.
Mr. Orbán stated that, by contrast, Hungary does not accept migration as the solution to demographic problems: “What we need is not numbers, but Hungarian children”.
“We believe that we are capable of this”, he added, noting however that “we are not organising our lives well enough to deliver this extremely important result”.
The Prime Minister said that Hungary nevertheless has reason to be proud, describing the changes in the family support system since 2010. He highlighted that the country has worked for the opportunity to increase spending on families.
As examples of this he mentioned the introduction of the family tax allowance, the re-introduction of maternity benefit and the child care allowance, the introduction of the extra child care allowance, the family home creation allowance, an increase of more than ten thousand in the number of places in nursery schools and crèches, and the supply of free school textbooks and free meals for children.
Regarding the national consultation on the family, the Prime Minister said that he believes that the economy will be kept on a course of growth at a rate above the European Union average, and this is why it makes sense to talk about what more could be done for families. He said the Government is seeking guidance from citizens not on matters of detail, but on orientation, so that on this basis new measures can be enacted in the period ahead.
The Prime Minister therefore asked “Hungarians, and women in particular” to spend half an hour on filling out the questionnaires.
Reporting on the European People’s Party’s recent congress in Helsinki, Mr. Orbán said it was not difficult to decide which of the two nominees for lead candidate to vote for: one was an extreme liberal, pro-immigration politician; the other was Manfred Weber, a Bavarian Christian democrat.
Governments must be on the people’s side, and must protect them from illegal migration
He stressed that Hungary, unlike other countries, has asked the public for their opinions on the issue of migration, while in countries where politicians failed to do this and pursued a pro-migration policy, they had lost the trust of their electorates.
The Prime Minister also spoke about the UN’s migration compact, which he said must be rejected because governments must be on the people’s side, and must protect them from illegal migration, terrorism, crime and economic woes. He pointed out that this pact is contrary to the will of the vast majority of European people, this is why Hungary was among the first to reject it, and now one country after another can be seen to be reacting similarly.
Mr. Orbán described the compact as a bad agreement, because it seeks to elevate to the level of international public policy certain principles that are contrary to the interests of Hungarians: principles such as the recognition of migration as a kind of human right, according to which someone arriving in a country should receive the same services and benefits as indigenous citizens.
“We do not want to take in migrants, and therefore we cannot accept a document which presents this as a noble, exalted goal shared by all humanity”, he said, observing that, in its relationship with non-Hungarians, Hungary has a clearly defined regulatory system, based on national interests.
Thanks to its political stability, Hungary is also becoming more important within its region
After his recent visit to China, the Prime Minister said that in specialist circles there is broad consensus that in the next five to ten years Central Europe – including Hungary – will be the source of European growth. This, he said, is also clearly understood by the Chinese. He added that the formation serving to boost long-term cooperation between China and sixteen Central European and Balkan countries came into being in Budapest. Mr. Orbán noted that Hungary can be competitive in China through the manufacture of high-quality products, and that during his latest visit agreement was reached on the resumption of Hungarian poultry exports, which will open up opportunities to Hungarian businesses worth hundreds of millions of dollars. This trade had previously been suspended due to avian influenza.
All statutory conditions are in place for operation of the Soros university
The Prime Minister said that “The Soros university is an old affair in Hungarian politics, surrounded by the permanent whipping up of hysteria ever since it has been here in Hungary”.
He stressed that “it is pointless to whip up hysteria, as I am not willing to grant anyone exempt status in relation to the law”.
The Prime Minister dismissed as a bluff reports that the university will leave Hungary, since in his view all the statutory conditions for its operation in Hungary are in place, with legislation guaranteeing that operation.
“I’d dare to place a big bet on their continued presence in Budapest”, he added.