Extracts from the joint press briefing by Ferenc Gyurcsány, Hungarian Prime Minister, and José Manuel Barroso
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 24/02/2009 First transmission: 24/02/2009
Following bilateral talks with Ferenc Gyurcsány, Hungarian Prime Minister, José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, told journalists the European Commission will advance with the second instalment of its aid to Hungary before the end of March 2009. Of course, the very important decisions taken by the Hungarian government should now be followed through with resolute action.
Ferenc Gyurcsány called again for European solidarity and for a massive EU aid plan for crisis-hit banks in Central and Eastern Europe. He warned that the possible further depreciation of invested assets by European banks in Central and Eastern Europe could not only affect the countries of the region but also have a negative impact on the Member Countries of the eurozone.
Asked about Hungary joining the euro, the president of the European Commission said that any EU member should, unless it had specific opt-outs, aim to join the euro as soon as possible.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||General view of the joint press briefing
||José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, saying (in ENGLISH) that after seeing the programme presented by the Hungarian authorities, and given the adjusted economic programme, they believe there are conditions now to advance with the second instalment before the end of March. Of course, these very important decisions taken by the Hungarian government, should now be followed through with resolute action. Prime Minister has given him clear assurance that Hungary will do that and follow this path of reforms and macro-economic stability. He very much wants to pay tribute to Hungary's and Prime Minister's determinations in this regard.
||Cutaway of press
||Ferenc Gyurcsány, Hungarian Prime Minister saying (in HUNGARIAN) that the investment of all the banks in the region of Central and Eastern Europe, is about 1600 billion euro. This is five times as much as the GDP of the region. Now if these invested assets are depreciated, then it is not only Central and Eastern Europe that faces a problem but also it has a negative impact on the eurozone countries. Therefore he thinks it is of key importance for all of them to reduce the risks. One tool there is to use a special bank reinforcing programme for Central and Eastern Europe with broad international help from the IMF to the EBRD, though the EU and the European Commission. Many of them work on hundred billion strong fund to be created for Central and Eastern Europe. Obviously the majority of that burden will have to be shouldered by the Member Countries. Hungary there must be active too and he pledges his commitment in that area.
||José Manuel Barroso saying (in ENGLISH) that except for the countries that have negotiated an opt-out, all Member States of the EU should be as soon as possible in the euro. They have seen during this last crisis that the euro has been a very important factor of stability and a shield of protection. So they very much want this. They are ready to work with those Member States if they of course make their own part of the effort for them to join the euro as soon as possible.
||Cutaways (2 shots)