Reuters – Hungary expects to have to introduce two more economic stimulus programs next year as growth slows in the European Union, its main trading partner, Prime Minister Viktor Orban stated on Saturday (July 27).
Orban’s economic policy has focused on maintaining an economic growth rate exceeding the European Union average by 2 percentage points. In June, the government announced the first batch of measures, including tax cuts, to boost job creation.
Hungary’s economy expanded by 5.3% in the first quarter, a 15-year-high, and Finance Minister Mihaly Varga has stated that the June measures could sustain growth at around 4% next year.
However, with the European outlook deteriorating, Orban stated that further steps could be needed to sustain fast economic growth.
“If our expectations for the prospects of the European economy are proved correct, in the spring of 2020 we will need a second and in the autumn of 2020 a third action plan to protect the economy,” Orban said in his annual policy speech in the Romanian town of Baile Tusnad.
He did not elaborate on the details of the measures but said the programs would have to improve Hungary’s competitiveness. Economists expect Hungary’s economic growth to slow to 3.3% next year from the 4.3% forecast for 2019.