Europe

Hungary scrapping visa fees for Ukrainians, backs EU waiver

  • Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban shake hands during their press conference after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)

    Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban shake hands during their press conference after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban hold a joint press conference after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)

    Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban hold a joint press conference after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban sign a cooperation agreement after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)

    Ukranian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, left, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban sign a cooperation agreement after their negotiations in the Parliament building in Budapest, Hungary, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Tibor Illyes/MTI via AP)  (The Associated Press)

Hungary's prime minister says his country is eliminating fees on visas for Ukrainian citizens.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who hosted Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman on Thursday, said that while Ukraine's EU membership was still distant, the EU had a "moral responsibility" to give Ukrainians visa waivers and agree on a free trade deal.

Groysman said Ukraine's economy was reviving and preparations were being made for a "massive" privatization process.

Hungary and Ukraine also signed four bilateral agreements ranging from sports promotion to the renovation of bridges across the Tisza River, which makes up part of their shared border. An estimated 130,000 ethnic Hungarians live in Ukraine.