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The Associated Press January 20, 2012, 8:18AM ET

Hungary retreats further in legal dispute with EU

Hungary's prime minister has backed down further in a legal clash with the European Union, saying the government is ready to change disputed laws even if it is convinced of their validity.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban says that, for example, a planned merger of the National Bank of Hungary with the country's financial regulator would be scrapped because of EU complaints.

Orban, speaking Friday after a meeting with Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger, said he would back the amendments "not because of the strength of the arguments but because of the power asking for them."

Hungary is seeking financial support from the EU and the IMF, which have raised strong objections to new laws seen limiting the central bank's independence.


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