Thanks to favourable economic and job market trends, the number of unemployed people has fallen to one-third, to 177 000, of the figure seen in 2010, Minister of Finance Mihály Varga said.

The 70-month downward trend has resulted in an unemployment rate of 3.8 percent in the period February-April 2018, and thus Hungary has become the country with the fourth lowest jobless rate within the EU. Double-digit wage growth has been accompanied by a steady rise in the number of people in employment: it has increased by more than 750 thousand over the past eight years.

As the Minister said, Hungary has achieved the largest rate of growth, 13.3 percentage points, in the employment rate since 2010, while the EU average was only 3.5 percentage points. Hungary’s employment target for 2020, which was to achieve the EU average, was hit already in 2016, he noted.

Over the past one year, the overall number of people in employment rose by 67 thousand while the private sector posted growth of 128 thousand. This has had a favourable impact on economic growth, the Minister pointed out. The number of people in public work schemes fell by 46 thousand, and that of people working abroad was down by 15 thousand, which corresponds to a decrease of 23 percent and 13 percent, respectively, year-on-year. This signals that, in line with Government plans, more and more people employed formerly in public work schemes have been landing private sector jobs and the number of people working abroad has also been declining, Mihály Varga said.

The youth unemployment rate used to be some 30 percent and now it has fallen below 10 percent, to 9.6 percent. Rising labour demand necessitates in the coming period the activation of labour reserves, the re-education of public work employees and long-time unemployed people, and an easier transition of women with small children and pensioners to the labour market, Mihály Varga noted.

(Ministry of Finance)