According to the latest data, Hungarian Government Securities Plus (MÁP+) subscriptions now amount to HUF 1,795 billion, and subscription figures indicate that MÁP+ could, on the one hand, be capable of channelling also newly generated incomes to savings and on the other of reducing the portfolio of retail cash, Gábor Gion, Minister of State for Finances of the Ministry of Finance told the Hungarian daily Magyar Hírlap.

“The fact that members of the Hungarian public are buying MÁP+ in large quantities means that they have faith in the future of the country. They are investing in their own country,” the Minister of State said in an interview published in the Saturday issue of the newspaper.

He said, thanks to government securities purchased by members of the public, the ratio of foreign currency debts to the total sovereign debt has fallen from fifty-two per cent in 2010 to twenty per cent, and as a result, the country’s external vulnerability has decreased significantly.

He took the view that the population’s continuously improving financial awareness could also be responsible for the high MÁP+ subscription data as it is not enough to offer a favourable product; it is also necessary for those concerned to recognise it, and this in turn requires fundamental financial knowledge.

The Minister of State said the reduction of the portfolio of cash is a national interest. Economic players hold more than six thousand billion forints in cash, amounting to fourteen percent of GDP. This is an extremely high figure by international and also regional standards. In the European Union we have the fifth highest cash portfolio, he said, indicating that the financial administration will launch several campaigns for the popularisation of cash-free payments. Mr Gion said that, for instance, from this autumn hundreds of schools will join the Cash-Free Schools Programme that started last year.

(Ministry of Finance/MTI)