Gyöngyösi: Social inequalities pose a threat to Europe

Addressing the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, MP Márton Gyöngyösi, the vice chairman of the Hungarian Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee talked about wage inequalities and the European Wage Union. As a member of the Hungarian delegation, Jobbik’s politician spoke in the debate of the report concerning the basic citizenship income. Confirming the statements of the report, Mr Gyöngyösi said social inequalities were causing serious tensions in Europe.

“You can say that these inequalities are among the greatest threats to our stability,” he claimed. He added that the problem was present both at member state- and at European levels. Jobbik’s politician noted that there was a massive internal migration wave going from the peripheral countries to the core, i.e., from the East to the West and from the South to the North. Youth unemployment and the shortage of skilled labour were very real problems. “In some countries, the minimum wage is below the level of subsistence,” Mr Gyöngyösi called attention to the intolerable situation. On the other hand, he expressed his contentment that these issues were finally in the forefront of public discourse. As examples of the increased attention, he noted that French President Emmanuel Macron and the new Austrian government have both mentioned the problem of social dumping while EC President Jean-Claude Juncker discussed European inequalities in his latest State of the Union address. Mr Gyöngyösi suggested that the Social Pillar was also aimed at solving this problem.

“The wage issue is finally on the agenda; we need regulations to eliminate the inequalities,” the politician said in Strasbourg. He criticized the report for not discussing geographical gaps even though the EU defines itself as a single market. “There is more emphasis on profit than wages,” he asserted. Talking about the eastern member states, he said they were convinced that it was the cheap labour model and the tax breaks that made them competitive. Mr Gyöngyösi called for such specific measures as assigning a Commissioner to the area of convergence, to reform the cohesion policies as well as to eliminate tax evasion and offshoring. Jobbik’s politician called the Assembly’s attention to the European Citizens’ Initiative for a Wage Union, which is aimed at solving these problems as well.


Alfahí -