The government aims to turn Hungary into Europe's most competitive production centre, for which boosting employment is a must, Prime Minister Viktor Orban told leaders of the Hungarian European Business Council (HEBC) in Budapest on Thursday.
Hungary will not deviate from the course of cutting public debt, the prime minister's spokesman Peter Szijjarto cited Orban as saying.
Szijjarto told a press conference that the government and the HEBC had agreed on setting up a consultation office for permanent coordination.
Orban noted in his speech that it was clear from current economic trends that industry in southern Germany and the economies of central Europe had become bound together.
He said a good sign for the aim of boosting employment was the expansion of the workforce by 50,000 people over the past year, and he pledged to create another 200,000 jobs this year as part of the public works programme.
HEBC leader Laszlo Kerekes said the talks focused on what the council considers three key areas for enhancing competitiveness: providing a predictable environment for companies, the stability of forint and Hungary's good reputation abroad.
HEBC is composed of CEOs of 15 multinational companies with operations in Hungary, including ABB, Electrolux, Ericsson, MOL, Nestle, OMV and Philips.
Szijjarto also underlined the government's message that it was prepared to enter into talks with the International Monetary Fund and European Union "at any time".