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Speculations about a potential ‘Huxlit’ dismissed

December 28th, 2018

A liberal commentator dismisses what he calls ‘left-wing fake news’ that the government has begun Hungary’s exit from the EU by repealing several bilateral trade treaties.

On Index, Balázs Márton points out that popular left-wing blogs are wrong to interpret the government’s mid-December decree which repeals a number of bilateral trade and investment treaties with EU member states as an indication of the government’s has begun the preparation of might be called Huxlit. The liberal columnist explains that the suspended agreements were signed between 1950 and Hungary’s admission to the EU 54 years later. These earlier deals with EU member states became obsolete after Hungary’s entry to the EU, and the European Court has called on Hungary to repeal them, noting that investment and trade in the EU should be regulated by EU law rather than by bilateral treaties. In a passing comment, Márton notes that the old trade and investment protection treaties have only been used by Hungary to sue foreign countries once (in the INA-MOL dispute with Croatia – see BudaPost, October 4, 2013), while multinational enterprises have used them several times to support their claims in Hungary. In the latest case, Edenred, a French food voucher company must be paid 23 million Euros after it successfully sued Hungary for the nationalization of the food-voucher market. Countries can successfully be sued under the EU investment protection scheme too, Márton remarks.

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