Hungary steps up anti-immigration stance with plans for NGO tax

The Hungarian government has stepped up its anti-immigration measures with plans to introduce a 25% tax on aid groups it says support migration.
Viktor Orbán’s administration has been among the most hostile to immigration in Europe. His Fidesz party was re-elected in a landslide victory in April, promising to crack down on non-governmental organisations it says support migrants.
“We want to use tax policy to step up against organising migration,” Hungary’s finance ministry said on June 19.
After the election, Orbán’s government swiftly resubmitted a bill aimed at criminalising aid to migrants and threatening activists with jail terms.
The original version of the bill, submitted in February, included a 25% tax on NGOs whose funding comes mostly from foreign donors, but that clause was dropped.
The finance ministry said on Tuesday it would reintroduce the proposed tax in separate legislation.
The ministry said the “immigration special tax” was necessary because defending against illegal immigration put a significant extra financial burden on the state.
It was not immediately clear what the tax would be levied on, nor when it would begin to be collected.
Hungary’s foreign minister, Péter Szijjártó, said on Tuesday that the government would hold a parliamentary vote on Wednesday on the “Stop Soros” bill without waiting for the legal opinion from the Venice commission, a panel of constitutional law experts of the Council of Europe. The commission was scheduled to issue its opinion this Friday.
The bill, which would empower the interior minister to ban NGOs that support migration and are seen as a national security risk, is part of the Orbán government’s campaign against George Soros, a Hungarian-born US financier known for funding liberal causes.
Source: The Guardian

Visit Us On TwitterVisit Us On Facebook