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Hungary needs to implement austerity measures, German minister says

Hungary needs to implement austerity measures, German minister says

Germany's finance minister on Thursday said the two countries' austerity measures were comparable and agreed that Hungary needed to implement unpopular measures to comply with European Union recommendations.
Peer Steinbrueck, on a short visit to the Hungarian capital, Budapest, said that Germany, before switching to the euro currency, had failed to meet criteria to reach a budget deficit of no more than 3 percent _ a precondition needed to be in place two years ahead of the euro currency adoption.
"I am realizing that Hungary is doing very much the same as we are in Germany. It might be more popular to promise to lower taxes ... but these promises don't work," Steinbrueck told reporters.
Steinbrueck also told his Hungarian counterpart Janos Veres he would "explicitly support" Hungary's newly submitted convergence plan to the European Union next week at the Oct. 10 meeting of economics and finance ministers, or Ecofin, in Brussels.
Protests have been held since Sept. 17, when a leaked recording showed Hungary's Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany admitting that the government lied about the economy to win April's general elections.