The government will increase pension payments during the year if the war in Ukraine drives Hungary’s inflation higher than expected, a state secretary of the finance ministry said in an interview published by pro-Fidesz daily Magyar Nemzet on Wednesday.
András Tállai said the government “must pay special attention to pensioners, and the ministry is monitoring inflationary trends. If needed, an unscheduled pension hike will be made in the summer,” Tallai said, adding that another hike could follow in November.
Tállai insisted that if the opposition won the April 3 election, “they will scrap 13th month pension and the cap on utility fees, which could increase pensioners’ household bills fourfold”.
As we have already reported, Hungary, similarly to other European countries, is already experiencing record-high inflation, which may even rise further from May. The central bank expects inflation to peak in July. According to their worst-case scenario, the price index could even rise to over 10 percent.
However, the source of the pension increase is in question, as the budget was already halfway to the annual deficit target by the end of February. For this reason, the Finance Minister has also talked about the need for readjustments after the election.
Featured photo by Attila Kovács/MTI