May 29, 2014 / 9:00 AM / 4 years ago

Hungary's deputy PM hints he may be nominated EU commissioner

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Hungary’s deputy prime minister, Tibor Navracsics, has hinted he could be nominated by Prime Minister Viktor Orban as a commissioner in the new EU executive.

Hungary's Deputy Prime Minister Tibor Navracsics speaks during an interview with Reuters in Budapest March 13, 2012. REUTERS/Bernadett Szabo

Navracsics, currently also justice minister, told weekly Heti Valasz he could take the post of foreign minister in Orban’s new government for a brief period before going to Brussels.

He said he was in a fortunate political situation as he won a mandate as an MP in last month’s parliamentary election.

“And it would be especially fortunate if I were to be nominated as EU commissioner in the autumn,” he added in the interview published on Thursday.

Navracsics said his nomination was on the agenda, but was not yet certain.

Orban, who was re-elected for a second term last month, is expected to form a new government next month.

Navracsics, 47, is a lawyer and former university professor, who led the ruling center-right Fidesz party’s parliamentary faction under Orban’s previous term.

Although he is seen within Fidesz as a moderate voice, a kind of “eminence grise”, his ministry drafted legislation in 2010 that led to conflicts with the European Union.

He clashed with Brussels repeatedly over a law regulating the media which critics said curbed media freedom. The Hungarian government denied the allegations but eventually modified the legislation.

Navracsics did not say which Commission post Hungary was aiming to get in the 28-member bloc.

Reporting by Krisztina Than; Editing by Alison Williams

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