A proposed tax on the Internet has been put on hold by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. Hungary's government was pushing full steam ahead to impose a tax on Internet traffic. It faced huge opposition from the public and from businesses. Mr Orban announced his government had frozen the plans after witnessing huge street protests in the capital Budapest. He also eventually took heed of warnings from the European Union that the tax would be a mistake. Orban announced his climb-down in a radio broadcast on Friday, saying: "This tax in its current form cannot be introduced. If the people not only dislike something but also consider it unreasonable, then it should not be done."
Hungary's U-turn on an Internet tax is not yet a victory for the people. Prime Minister Orban said he had not scrapped the idea altogether. He said there would be consultations starting in January next year to investigate the potential of generating tax revenue from the Internet. He said it would obviously have to be different in nature to the one just binned. That involved a 60-cent tax one on every gigabyte of data someone consumed. Critics voiced concerns this would limit freedom of expression and hurt online companies. Citizens will continue to campaign for a tax-free Internet. An anti-tax Facebook page already has over 250,000 Likes.