The number of people in employment increased by 774 thousand compared to the time when the first cabinet of PM Orbán was formed in 2010. The bulk of growth was registered in the public sector, where the number of new jobs was up by 625 thousand in the same period, Minister of Finance Mihály Varga said, commenting on the latest jobs data released by the Hungarian Central Statistical Office (KSH).

The number of people in employment has edged close to 4.5 million, and concurrently the number of employees in public work schemes and those working abroad has declined. The unemployment rate continued to be 3.6 percent, which figure places Hungary as third in the EU ranking, right behind Germany and the Czech Republic, he said.

In the period May-July 2018, the number of people in employment grew by 50 thousand, to 4 million 484 thousand year-on-year, and the number of new private sector jobs was up by 92 thousand.  This means that in Hungary there have never been so many economically active people before. Compared to the EU average, the rate of job growth in Hungary was four times higher since 2010, and within the V4 Hungary’s indicator showed the highest increase.

The Government-initiated six-year wage agreement, which stipulates a significant rise in the minimum wage and the guaranteed minimum wage as well as the reduction of payroll taxes, has been a major factor which has helped the increase of jobs producing high added value, the Minister said.

Differences between regions have also diminished, he added. Since 2010, the unemployment rate has been halved in almost every county, a sign of economic convergence. The Government is placing special emphasis on assisting the shift of public work employees, jobseekers and the long-term unemployed to the labour market as these groups may be a reservoir of potential workers, Mihály Varga said. A new labour market pilot programme has been launched, though which the Government hopes to help at least 50 thousand people to land a private sector job in the next one-and-a-half years.

In the coming period, he said, labour reserves must be activated to achieve full employment, public work employees and unemployed people must be educated, and the job chances of women with small children and pensioners must be improved.

(Ministry of Finance)