“Rules must be clear,” PM Morawieczki says in interview

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One of the most important elements of the agreement reached between Poland and Hungary on one side and the rest of the EU member states on the other is that clear rules have been laid down, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawieczki told Hungarian news and opinion portal Mandiner in an interview .
“We assured each other that we would not make any arbitrary, politically motivated decisions. The rules must be clear,” Morawieczki said. “In addition, it is a significant achievement that the position of Poland and Hungary has received strong support in the EU. We have proven to be important partners who cannot be ignored.”
He said that separating financial issues from the politicized rule of law of debate is the crucial element of the agreement.
“It had to be made clear that the mechanism that is being set up to force member states to respect the rule of law is not itself in line with EU law,” Morawieczki said. “Such a solution would have provided an unprecedented opportunity to put pressure on the internal affairs of a member state. The EU treaties respect and protect the sovereignty of the member states, but the new mechanism would violate and severely limit it.”
Asked whether the two countries were banking on the increasing pressure on the rest of the Union to begin distributing the coronavirus recovery funds, the Polish prime minister said that was not the aim.
” That is not the way I would approach the issue. What we have achieved is the result of a long series of negotiations with the German presidency. It was not our intention to run the clock, but we had a duty to properly represent our interests,” Morawieczki said. ” And above all, the agreement is important for EU citizens who are waiting for financial support to give a boost to their economic recovery following the coronavirus epidemic. We want to give them hope for a better future.”
Asked about his personal relationship with his Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orbán, Morawieczki said they have common views on many important issues.
“Our positions are very similar. We agree on the values, we agree on the assessment of the geopolitical dimension of the EU, as well as on many detailed issues, practical issues such as cohesion or the common agricultural policy,” he said. “We both understood the need to develop a common European agenda in the areas of internal security, energy policy and border protection. And perhaps we also recognized the need for judicial reform; in our own country, we had to abolish post-communist customs that Western European countries with a different heritage did not have to cope with.”
Title image: Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawieczki. (source: MTI/EPA/AFP/John Thys)

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