Monday, May 16, 2022

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V4 countries agree to reduce dependency on Russian energy sources

The Visegrad Group countries (the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) are standing for peace and stopping the war in Ukraine as soon as possible to ensure security in central Europe, said Hungary’s Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó in London, where a meeting of the V4 plus the United Kingdom took place.

In the joint statement presented by all leaders, the V4 countries recognised the importance of reducing their dependence on fossil fuels from Russia, as part of improving their collective energy security.

“We need to move forward together as Sates of the Visegrad Group,” said Czech Prime Minister, Petr Fiala. “We need to move forward together, looking for ways to deal with some of the effects, be it the energy prices or the refugee crisis.”

“Today we know very well that we will be independent of Russian oil and gas,” agreed Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki.

Following the summit, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that all efforts would be made to restore peace over the coming weeks.

However, he said that the effects of the sanctions imposed on Russia would be felt by all of Europe including Hungary. In particular, expanding the sanctions to the energy sector, the oil and gas sectors would put a disproportionately heavy burden on Hungary, the prime minister said.

“We condemn Russia’s military attack and the war but we will not allow Hungarian families to be made to pay the price of war,” he added.

According to him, these sanctions must not cover oil and gas imports. Indeed, Hungary buys most of its oil and natural gas from Russia and 90 per cent of Hungarian families heat their homes with gas.

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