July 19th, 2012

If Viktor Orbán thinks getting EU money takes nerves of steel, he should try running an honest business in Hungary

Yesterday Prime Minister Viktor Orbán spoke at the latest in what we can only imagine is an endless succession of conference about his government’s economic program. He apparently had some tart words to say about bureaucracy and governmental complexity.

Addressing the delegates, he said that applying for EU money was “very complicated” despite his government’s attempts to make it easier, and that it takes “nerves of steel” to go through the process needed to get EU cash for projects. He went on to say that starting next year the government would develop a system for getting money from Brussels that is “fit for a human mind,” as it was imperative for Hungary to draw down every “last cent” of available EU funding.

Here is our tart response: What about the equally or even more nightmarish swamp of bureaucratic complexity, over-taxation, constant regulatory churn and official rent-seeking faced by local businesses that don’t base their business models on free money? How about making rules for these firms that are “fit for a human mind”?

On the other hand, maybe he has a point, since anyone who tries to run a “normal” business in Hungary that doesn’t rely on government largess is probably crazy to begin with.

  • Donian

    Hear, hear for the “tart response”.

  • Drew

    Orban, like others in various Hungarian governments (of both sides of politics) are carrying on the opportunistic tradition of big state \activity\ seeing themselves as MD or CEO (funded by taxpayers while their inherent inferiority complex forces them to have their hands out like teenage children), dependent upon other big states e.g. Habsburgs/Austria, Germany, Soviets/Russia now the EU to tell them what to do, then give them money…. meanwhile the biggest employers taking personal risks i.e. small medium enterprises face extreme obstacles to function, let alone start up and flourish……

  • Steve g

    What, like it’s hard to get an AFA szamla outside of Hungary that APEH (or whatever they’re called now) will accept?

  • Rolrox

    Ditto Donian!

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