MEGA — “Make Europe Great Again” — is becoming increasingly popular in Europe. The right-wing slogan is a play on its American cousin MAGA, “Make America Great Again,” and was adopted by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban as the tagline for his country’s presidency of the Council of the European Union, which started on Monday.

There are convergences and divergences between MEGA and MAGA and each movement has different implications for Japan and the Indo-Pacific.

First, within the EU, MEGA is associated with a desire for a smaller role for Brussels in the European project and more representation for the values and policies of middle and small member states. For Central and Eastern European countries in particular, being in the bloc is not about becoming more like Western Europe, but about benefiting from policies that represent local needs within the broader regional context — including in areas like economic prosperity, security and preserving national and ethnic identities.