The six-year wage deal brokered last year enables faster economic growth in 2017, Minister for National Economy Mihály Varga told Mokka, the popular morning show on TV2.

The Minister expects that cutting liabilities payable by enterprises will facilitate growth, and the increase of minimum wage and the minimum wage for skilled workers will result in consumption and industrial output growth in 2017.

“Provided we utilize EU funds even more efficiently than we did last year, the economy may expand by as much as 4 percent,” the Minister said.

As the Minister pointed out, the year 2016 has proven that the Hungarian economy is capable of growing even without EU funding.

Responding to a question of the 2018 Budget, the Minister said that the draft version was scheduled to be discussed by ministries in February, and in case the Government endorses it, the Bill can be debated already in April.

With regard to the OLAF report, Mihály Varga stated that the institute demands the repayment of HUF 76bn, but the Government disputes this amount. The alleged corruption cases took place during the term of prior governments, and the final amount to be repayment will hopefully be lower.

(Ministry for National Economy)