Daniel Palotai, Executive Director of the MNB in Budapest, said there are presently 330 proposals in the Competitiveness Program, and The Competitiveness Mirror reflects the implementation – or lack thereof – of these guidelines. Palotai further noted that despite its positive performance since 2013, the Hungarian economy must experience a turnaround in competitiveness in order to maintain growth that is 2 percent higher than developed countries.
MNB’s Competitiveness Program was announced back in February, and after a number of various measures announced by October 18, 2019, the priority-weighted implementation of the MNB’s Competitiveness Program currently stands at 22 percent. Already, one half of the 330 proposals have begun, with the greatest progress made being in regard to improving the financial sector.
State-efficiency is also coming along well, whereas the implementation of the government’s family-friendly program has been low. There have been positive measures put in place to improve competitiveness via protection plans for both the family and the economy. Still, further reforms will be necessary to accelerate progress on other fronts, such as availability of skilled labor, development of productive and innovative SMEs, and improved public efficiency.
Palotai noted that Hungary’s “catching-up cycle” has been “exceptional.” However, he also emphasized that full implementation of the Competitiveness Program is required in order for Hungary to continue catching up with other more developed countries and maintain the progress it has made over the last decade. Some areas of focus for the Hungarian economy will be: affordable housing, a sustainable pension system, a healthy society, demographic recovery, well-developed infrastructure, a skilled workforce, and full employment.