“Information on the details of the Family Protection Action Plan is also available via the government’s 1818 national telephone customer service hotline”, the Ministry of Human Capacities’ State Secretary for Family and Youth Affairs said at a press conference on Friday in Budapest.

Katalin Novák reminded the press that four points of the Family Protection Action Plan will be coming into force on the first of July: the “baby shower” subsidy, the expansion of the subsidised-interest loan available within the framework of the Family Home Creation Scheme (CSOK) to include used properties, an expended form of the scheme enabling families to have some or all of their mortgage debt waived, and the car purchasing subsidy for large families.

“In addition, nursery school development projects are continuously ongoing, and from the first of January the childcare benefit for grandparents and lifelong exemption from personal income payments tax for women with four or more children will also be launched”, she added.

“There is high interest in these opportunities and responses to questions can now also be received via the national telephone customer service hotline: the 1818 hotline can be called 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in addition to which customer service information is also available via chat and e-mail”, the State Secretary explained.

She added that around 70 thousand calls are received by the customer service hotline each year, but in recent weeks some 10 thousand requests have already been made with relation to the Family Protection Action Plan.

“The hotline’s staff have received training from colleagues at the Ministry of Human Capacities, meaning they are also capable of answering questions concerning specialised details and can easily find answers to more complicated questions”, Ms. Novák said.

The State Secretary explained that the answers to frequently asked questions can also be found on the csalad.hu website, but the website isn’t interactive and people who are interested can’t make queries.

In reply to a question, Ms. Novák said most questions concern the ‘baby shower’ subsidy and the car purchasing subsidy for large families. In reply to a question on whether the banks are ready for the introduction of the new schemes, she said the Ministry has been in contact with the Hungarian Banking Association for months, and believes that most banks are ready.

The State Secretary highlighted the fact that the Hungarian family support system is extremely generous and has been expanding continuously since 2010, as also mirrored by next year’s budget according to which 2200 billion forints (EUR 6.8 billion) will be spent on supporting families in 2020, which is two and a half times the amount spent on families ten years ago. “We would like young people who decide to have children and families that are already raising children to be able to live an easier life year after year”, the State Secretary for Family and Youth Affairs said.