Prime Minister Orbán made the remarks at the Lámfalussy Conference in Budapest which was hosted by the National Bank of Hungary. The future of Europe, according to the Hungarian leader, is one of nation states cooperating together, rather than a federal EU super-state. He also used to occasion to praise U.S. President Donald Trump.
According to the Hungarian government’s website, Kormany, Orban said “Brussels has become enslaved to a utopia” when it comes to its dealing with the future prospects of the political bloc. He noted the EU was becoming weaker and claimed it struggled to even exert itself as a regional power, adding the euro had failed to achieve the status of a world reserve currency like the American dollar.
To Orbán, the future lies in stronger sovereignty for nation states and said that smaller, more regiona, political, blocs like the Visegrad group (V4) could be one of the poles in a new multi-polar Europe.
Orbán said the reason for the failure of the EU was that many of the bloc’s politicians and bureaucrats had viewed Europeans as one people. Orbán claimed there is no “European people”, but a Europe consisting of many peoples.
The Hungarian leader, who has been a long-time supporter of Trump, took the opportunity to note a key phrase during President Trump’s speech in which he said countries have a right to put their own interests first and said the phrase marks the end of multilateralism and a return to bilateral trade and negotiations between nations.
“We have received permission from the highest secular office in the world, in line with which we will also be allowed to place ourselves first. This is a great thing: a great freedom and a great gift,” the prime minister said.
Weighing in on the upcoming French presidential election, Orbán put his backing behind conservative Republican candidate François Fillon saying he could be “the next President of the French Republic, we hope”. Fillon has been compared to populist Front National presidential candidate Marine Le Pen after he stated unequivocally that France is “not a multicultural nation”.