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Mar 01, 2019

Did the European Commission just say that Hungary is performing better?

Yes. They’ve got a lot of good things to say about Hungary’s success.

The European Commission published its country report on Hungary on Wednesday. You know the one, an annual assessment of progress on structural reforms.

There’s a lot of good news in this report and it comes at a time, admittedly, when there has not been a lot of positive back and forth between the EC and Hungary. But when talking about Hungary’s economic reforms and performance, they couldn’t help but acknowledge that the country is enjoying an upswing.

“Strong growth performance has created favourable conditions to carry out reforms to increase productivity,” the EC’s report on Hungary begins, “and strengthen growth fundamentals, economic resilience and convergence capacity.

“The Hungarian economy,” according to the European Commission, “is enjoying a strong cyclical upswing.”

Compare this to where the country was pre-2010. Hungary had to get an emergency bailout from the IMF. Growth had gone deep into negative territory. Unemployment surged above 10 percent. The budget deficit far exceeded the Maastricht limit of 2 percent and debt was spiraling negative.

Today, the labor force is growing and nearly everyone who wants to work has a job. We’ve come so far.