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Jun 29, 2018

Hungary’s unemployment rate hits an all-time low of 3.7 percent

The finance minister said income has been increasing thanks, in part to the six-year wage agreement, and the number of people in employment has also been rising in Hungary

Hungary’s unemployment rate hit an all-time low of 3.7 percent in May 2018, official figures show.

Mihály Varga, minister of Finance, said Hungarian's income has been increasing thanks, in part to the six-year wage agreement, and the number of people in employment has also been rising in Hungary - by more than 750,000 over the past eight years.

In light of the latest KSH data, the minister said the government continues to target full employment in the country.

“This was the goal we were focusing on in the drafting of the 2019 budget and the tax package,” the minister said. A downward trend of 71 months has resulted in an unemployment rate of 3.7 percent, and the number of jobless people fell to one-third of the figure registered eight years ago, he pointed out.

Over the past year, the number of people in employment rose by 64,000, while the number of people hired in the private sector was up by 108,000. The number of participants in public work schemes and those working abroad fell by 41,000 and a couple of thousand, respectively.

The minister said this clearly shows that significant wage hikes of recent years have prompted public work employees to get a private sector job and persuaded people who had worked abroad to move back home.

He added that the employment rate rose to above 69 percent from 60 percent registered in 2010, and this figure is well above the EU average. Minister Varga said the government is working to remove obstacles in the way of elderly jobseekers with the aim of activating labor reserves. The minister also noted that there will be tax breaks and incentives for workers in the coming months.