Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has seen what can happen with poorly managed food supplies firsthand. Hungary has had its fair share of problems in that area over the years, especially following WWII.
Their history is well documented, and they have been doing their best to ensure it doesn’t repeat itself for them or the rest of the globe. When he speaks up about the problems he sees coming as a result of the Ukrainian-Russia conflict, it’s in large part because of how dependent his nation is on their exports.
“The embargo against Russia will exclude Russian grain from the world market, the war will exclude Ukrainian grain, there will be famine in many parts of the world from which migrants have already arrived in Europe, and this pressure will increase…I want Hungary to be able to protect itself, and so we need to strengthen our defenses against migration pressure.”
Given Hungary’s acceptance of “600,000 refugees – almost 700,000 – from Ukraine, without any reservations,” Orban’s people have been shouldering a lot of the burden of war with Ukraine. A national conservative, Orban recently won a fourth consecutive term in office, matching Germany’s former leader Angela Merkel.
International dependence is something the globe has been dealing with for decades. Each nation along the way has found specific areas where they are strongest in providing for themselves as well as other nations. For countries like Russia and Ukraine grain, hops, and other products have been a big part of their economy. Taking that away from Russia as a punishment for their actions against Ukraine impacts the bottom line for Russian finances.
Yet the blow of that loss is felt by economies across the globe. Prices skyrocket as there is less to go around, and in turn, people are unable to afford products that comprise the cornerstone of their diets.
Other non-necessity products are impacted by these price increases as well. The global economy and especially the already inflated economy here in the US simply cannot take these kinds of price impacts at this time. Simply put, Americans are struggling to make ends meet, and given how dependent our nation is on grain this kind of loss is devastating.
Russia has been directly making the developing crisis worse as a way of lashing out over its loss of finances. President of the European Council, Charles Michel claimed on social media that he “saw silos full of grain, wheat and corn ready for export” while visiting Ukraine but went on to claim that the “badly needed food is stranded because of the Russian war and blockade of Black Sea ports.”
Various reports have substantiated his claims as well. Given other reports of Russia targeting Ukrainian grain storage silos, they are not just blocking shipments but destroying the supply chain as well.
The conflict has been devastating for the global economy. From missing shipments to canceled contracts for other countries to export products to Russia and Ukraine, there have been no real winners from this conflict as of now. Given Ukraine’s chief action of simply trying to repel the advancement of Russian troops with no rebuttal by striking Russia, the Russians haven’t felt the same squeeze that everyone else has.
While they are certainly feeling the impact of a lack of exports and businesses that are based in the west shutting down, this simply pales in comparison to what Ukraine has felt. Both certainly are child’s play compared to the famine the Hungarian Prime Minister is forecasting for the globe.