As shown by the example of South Tyrol, wage union and autonomy are vital for integrating Central Europe

In the past two days, we met with the leaders of the South Tyrol Autonomous Province in Bozen/Bolzano, Italy. We were given an insight into the history of German autonomy in South Tyrol and the operation of its institutions. We introduced our hosts to the Hungarian political conditions, the situation of ethnic minorities in Hungary and Jobbik’s wage union initiative as well as the autonomy efforts of Hungarian communities living abroad.

We had discussions with dr. Thomas Widmann, the deputy speaker of the province’s parliament (Landtag), dr. Luis Durnwalder, South Tyrol’s former Prime Minister, prof. dr. Oskar Peterlini, the former senator of the Italian Parliament, dr. Hanspeter Munter, ex-Landtag-member and former director of the South Tyrol Trade Association, Franz Pahl ex-Landtag-member and Univ.-Prof. dr. Christoph Pan, internationally acclaimed autonomy expert. We agreed that we would soon continue the dialogue, so we invited our partners for a visit to Hungary.

The functioning of South Tyrol’s autonomy clearly shows that Hungary’s economic and foreign policy has been a dead end in the past 27 years. Foreign companies attracted to Hungary by tax discounts and low wages further aggravate our dependence on international economic processes while preventing us from catching up with the more advanced economies. The other lesson was that the Motherland’s economic and financial support cannot truly be instrumental in the survival and prosperity of our national communities living on the other side of the border unless it is coupled with a clear legal framework and fully functioning institutions of regional autonomy where the Motherland is ready to take an assertive and even an occasionally confrontative stance to ensure the respect for such institutions. Confirming a fact emphasized by Jobbik so many times, South Tyrol’s example has once again demonstrated that a wide-scale regional autonomy actually strengthens rather than weakens the state that provides it (Italy in this case). The synergistic development of the co-habitant nations can guarantee a peaceful prosperity for people in their own homeland.

After forming the government in 2018, Jobbik will continue to speak the language of actions rather than words in terms of helping the regional autonomy efforts of Hungarian communities living abroad in block as well as supporting the Hungarian diaspora in their struggle for cultural autonomy. Adopting the good South Tyrol practices, among others, we will also preserve and enhance the currently applied subsidization system for economic development, education, culture, NGOs and churches.

Still in opposition, we already launched our wage union initiative to promote a transition from the current assembly plant concept to a more innovative economic model built on an output with higher added value, a process we will complete when we get into government. We are convinced that this is the only way to ensure the long-term survival of the Hungarian community in the Carpathian Basin, to stop the brain drain and to bring back those who were driven from Hungary to take economic refuge abroad.

 

Jobbik MP Márton Gyöngyösi and Koloman Brenner, Jobbik’s MP candidate in the electorate of Sopron