Hungary’s new central bank act has led to outcry from the IMF, the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the National Bank of Hungary itself.
The act, rightly, is perceived as part of a broader power grab by prime minister Viktor Orbán from any institution or individual that serves as a check on government policy. It is also the latest in a series of attempts to undermine the current governor, András Simor.
However, some of the measures that the act proposes already apply to many of the major central banks.
It is not so much a case of what the act says, then. More what it signifies.
That highlights just how flimsy and susceptible to politicians’ whims central bank independence actually is. Read more