“On 12 December 2018, the Hungarian Parliament adopted a legislative package establishing a system of administrative courts. The new administrative courts are expected to be operational in January 2020.
I am concerned by the strong powers this reform of the judiciary confers on the Minister of Justice in the future administrative court system which will decide on cases related to the administration. This raises issues about the independence of the judiciary.
It is regrettable that the Hungarian Government and the Parliament did not wait for the Venice Commission to issue an Opinion on the legislative package which was requested by the Minister of Justice. Public consultation on the initiative in the country was very limited.
I call on the Hungarian President to return the legislative package to the Parliament to enable a fully informed review of the package. I intend to raise this issue in my forthcoming dialogue with the Hungarian authorities.”