EU citizenship may be available for bond buyers
Those wishing to purchase an EU passport might soon be able buy it – together with Hungarian state bonds, according to a bill
The bill, submitted by the leader of the Fidesz group belonging to Prime Minister Viktor Orban, would make it easy for citizens from outside the European Union to obtain Hungarian citizenship, provided they, or a company that they own, buy Hungarian debt.
Fidesz group leader Antal Rogan and MPs Mihaly Babak and Krisztian Kapus, who initiated it, said that the bill ties granting citizenship to a purchase of state bonds in an effort to contribute to state financing, according to Hungarian media.
Further direct investment by those applying for this form of settling in Hungary will boost domestic real estate markets, commercial activities and the investment market, they added.
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The move is likely to be slammed by richer EU member states like France or the UK, which have complained that the accession of poorer eastern European countries has increased migration for economic reasons.
Hungary joined the EU in 2004 and its citizens have full rights to travel and work anywhere in the 27-nations bloc.It has the highest ratio of government debt to gross domestic product (GDP) almost 80% in the second quarter of the year - of the new, former communist members of the EU and although its government is in talks with the International Monetary Fund and the EU for a bailout, the negotiations are not making quick progress.