On 7 December 2017 Deputy State Secretary Balázs Molnár received in his office Johan Krafft, head of the EU Coordination Secretariat of the Swedish Prime Minister’s Office.

The parties reviewed the latest developments of the negotiations regarding the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, the issue of the widening of the European Monetary Union, and positions relating to the Multiannual Financial Framework beyond 2020. Mr Molnár further informed his counterpart of the position Hungary represents at the ongoing talks concerning the applicability of the Posted Workers Directives to the road transport sector.

Johan Krafft took the view that with the departure of Britain, the context of EU cooperation will also change, and Sweden is therefore seeking to strengthen its existing bilateral relations with the Visegrád countries. He described the expected rise in Swedish contributions due to Britain’s exit as a sensitive fiscal and political issue, and suggested the modernisation of the cohesion funds and the intensification of their effectiveness. Sweden clearly rejects the introduction of the euro, and in consequence, the Swedish government will not take measures of any kind in that department. Mr Molnár highlighted that Hungary has a vested interest in a strong Eurozone as well as a legal obligation to join the Eurozone. Meeting the relevant conditions is, however, not sufficient on its own. A pre-condition of accession is that it should have a positive impact on the Hungarian economy and its competitiveness. Mr Molnár stressed in the context of the cohesion funds that Hungary has a particular interest in preserving the significance of traditional policies that are based on the Treaties and serve the improved global competitiveness of the whole of the EU. In defining the funds, the parties must concentrate on the inherent added European value.

During the next Presidency Sweden would like to see the questions of migration and solidarity in a compromise package. Mr Molnár pointed out by contrast that as the issues of the rule of law and migration fundamentally divide the Member States, we must seek to find a solution on the issues of migration and solidarity which is acceptable for every country.

Mr Molnár said in the context of the review of the Posted Workers Directive that Hungary voted against the amendment because in return for a number of Hungarian and V4 concessions made during the talks, our derogation proposal relating to the international road transport sector was not incorporated into the text. Hungary is focusing on negotiating special rules for the status of the transport sector. During these negotiations Hungary will consistently represent its position formulated in consultation with representatives of the Hungarian road transport sector in the interest of protecting its best interests.