The Hungarian government was very happy, when the new ÖVP-FPÖ government was formed in Austria, but it seems that Vienna is holding some distance, Die Presse reports.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban really wanted Austria’s new chancellor to visit Budapest as soon as possible, but as Sebastian Kurz didn’t want it, finally it was Orban who visited Vienna in January. According to the Hungarian PM’s circles, Kurz is expected to come eventually, but so far only Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl visited Budapest.
According to Die Presse, the Austrians were showing a friendly distance towards the Hungarian government at the background press discussions, and Kneissl showed the same attitude when meeting her Hungarian counterpart, Peter Szijjarto. The Austrian daily’s correspondent, Boris Kalnoky added that it seems as Vienna wants to downplay a bit the impression that Kurz and Orban as “close friends”.
Kneissl also mentioned the importance of transparency and legal security for Austrian investors in Austrian-Hungarian economic relations. According to Kalnoky’s evaluation, Vienna expects stability after the Hungarian elections in April, but stability can also lead to stagnation, so maybe the momentum brought by a hypothetical change in power can be positive. It doesn’t seem that the Austrian government couldn’t live without Orban, he noted.
Earlier, Die Presse reported that the Orban government is trying to “court” Austria through the more right-wing coalition partner, FPÖ, who are seen as more reliable allies by Budapest.