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Press statement by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán before his talks with Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic

We will now each make a brief statement.

First of all, thank you very much for honouring Hungary with your visit. The last time the President of France visited Hungary was in 2007, and so I could say it was high time that we met again. Those of you who know Budapest know that in terms of weather the month of May would have been ideal: that is when Budapest and Hungary are at their most beautiful. But in terms of politics, December is also good. European journalists are always interested in Hungary’s relationship with France, and the relationship between the two leaders. I would like to make it clear that Hungary’s relationship with President Macron is one of respect. And since France is the homeland of encyclopaedists, and they are the best when it comes to definitions, as a rule we accept their definition.  We also accept the definitions recently given by the President: that we are both political adversaries and European partners. Today we will certainly agree on three things: the first is that each of us loves his country; the second is that we are both working to strengthen Europe; and we will also agree, I think, that Europe needs strategic autonomy. We Hungarians understand strategic autonomy to mean three things, and I will say these to the President. We believe that there is no autonomy without a European defence industry. There is no autonomy without energy capability – in other words, nuclear energy. And there is no autonomy without self-sufficiency in agriculture. This is why we support common European defence policy, this is why we support nuclear energy, and this is why we support Europe having a strong agricultural sector. I think there is a good chance that our talks this afternoon will be successful.

Welcome, Mr. President!