American biotechnology product development company Thermo Fisher opened its new regional service and development centre on Tuesday, in the Advance Tower building in Budapest.

At the inauguration ceremony, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said the appearance of increasing numbers of service and development centres was a sign of the economic boom.

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“The 110 institutions operating in Hungary are now not only bringing service activities, but activities that require complex knowledge and which create high added value, providing an opportunity for highly trained staff that can also compete with European workplaces”, he added.

The Minister stressed that thanks to its flexible labour regulations and its restructured, modern education system, Hungary is a major target country for investment even amidst increasingly strong international competition. He also stressed the importance of low tax rates, adding that it is thanks to this that continuously increasing wages do not go hand-in-hand with spiralling workforce costs.

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Thermo Fisher’s President for the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East and Africa) said he hopes that together with the two other centres, the Budapest centre will assure the company’s competitiveness in the long term. At the event, Andy Thompson pointed out that the service sectors are developing dynamically, the even the most modern solutions are becoming quickly outdated, and accordingly enterprises are forced to undergo continuous renewal.

Vice-President of Thermo Fisher Richard Spoor said the centre, which currently employs 100 staff, will be taking on a similar number of employees next year and expects further growth, adding that the number of company staff employed within the EMEA region has increased from 13 thousand to 24 thousand over the past five years.

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Thermo Fisher, which employs 70 thousand people worldwide, is the world’s leading healthcare and medical company, performing biotechnology research in diagnostics and pharmaceutical and vaccine production. Last year, the company’s turnover exceeded 20 billion dollars, and it spent some 1 billion dollars on research and development. The Budapest centre, which is also involved in financial and IT development, will service the countries of the EMEA region.