The Visegrad countries agree that there is a need for a strong European Union, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said on Tuesday.
The EU is currently wealthy but weak, which is the worst combination. And this is what caused trouble in the form of uncontrolled migration, Orbán said in a statement at an economic forum held in Krynica in southern Poland.
“This process should be halted,” Orbán said adding that defence against uncontrolled migration should be taken as far south as possible, so help must be offered to Bulgaria.
The forum was also attended by the prime ministers of the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia as well as Ukraine.
Speaking after talks with his counterparts, Orbán said that when Ukraine decided to head down a new path it had received nothing but support from the EU. Ukraine was promised that EU member states were ready to accept it into their community step by step, Orbán said.
But over the last two years there has not been any progress in this area, Orbán said. He added, however, that the things that did happen in connection with Ukraine’s EU integration were not supposed to, noting a referendum in which Dutch voters rejected the ratification of an EU-Ukraine association agreement earlier this year.
Orbán said the EU was in a very difficult situation, as it struggles with its own internal problems while enlargement of the bloc has slowed and there are no more member states left that support strengthening ties with Ukraine. But the Visegrad Four (V4) countries remain friends of Ukraine and support boosting EU-Ukraine ties, he said. The EU’s ongoing challenges are no reason not to grant Ukraine visa-free status and the bloc must honour its word on this matter, Orbán said, adding that the V4 are committed to lifting visa requirements for Ukrainian nationals.