Hungary’s Government Starts Anti-IMF Campaign in Main Newspapers

Hungary’s government, which requested financial aid from the International Monetary Fund 11 months ago, placed full-page advertisements on the back pages of major newspapers today, declaring it “won’t give in to the IMF.”

The country expects “respect and trust” from the IMF and “we won’t give up Hungary’s independence,” the ad on the back page of business daily Napi Gazdasag said. Other slogans rejected cutting family benefits or introducing a property tax.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Oct. 1 ruled out an IMF loan agreement that entails cuts in pensions, jobs or wages, conditions which last month he said were demands of international lenders. The IMF wants “more balanced” policies that improve the growth outlook and doesn’t recommend austerity measures on top of government plans, the fund’s representative in Hungary said on Oct. 4.

Hungary’s talks for a loan of about 15 billion euros ($19.5 billion) were delayed repeatedly because of Orban’s resistance to legal and economic conditions set by the IMF and the European Union.

To contact the reporter on this story: Edith Balazs in Budapest at ebalazs1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at jagomez@bloomberg.net

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