Jan 05, 2017

Hungary's unemployment rate drops from 6.2 to 4.5 percent in just one year

Hungary now has the third lowest unemployment rate in the European Union behind Germany and the Czech Republic

Hungary’s unemployment rate has dropped from 6.2 percent to 4.5 percent in just one year, it has been revealed.

According to the Central Statistical Office (KSH), Hungary's rolling average three-month jobless rate reached 4.5 percent in September-November, dropping from 4.7 percent in the previous month and 6.2 percent in the same period a year earlier.

The rate covers unemployment among those between the ages of 15 and 74. In absolute terms, there were 207,500 unemployed in Hungary in September-November, 11,800 fewer than in August-October and 76,300 fewer than in the same period a year earlier, MTI reports.

The unemployment rate among 15 to 24-year-olds stood at 11.8 percent, down 3.3 percentage points from a year earlier. Still, the age group accounted for about one-fifth of all unemployed.

Out-of-work Hungarians spent about 18.1 months on average looking for employment during the period. Just over 46 percent of the unemployed had been seeking work for one year or more.

The number of employed Hungarians during the period stood at 4,414,400, up 10,200 from the previous month and 141,700 more than one year earlier. The employment rate edged up to 58.8 percent. The number of employed included 220,800 Hungarians in fostered work programs and 117,600 working abroad.

KSH defines “employed” as anybody who worked one or more hour a week or was temporarily absent from their job during the survey week.

Péter Cseresnyés, secretary of state for employment at the ministry for National Economy, said the number of unemployed had never been this low in Hungary since the regime change.

Most of the jobs added since 2010 have been created in the private sector, Cseresnyés said. He added that Hungary now had the third lowest unemployment rate in the European Union behind Germany and the Czech Republic.

Cseresnyés attributed Hungary’s improving labor market numbers to the government’s job creation policies, including the job protection scheme, which he said supported the employment of 920,000 people last year.