Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó and Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary Kft. managing director Christian Wolff.
Mercedes’ plant in Kecskemét, Hungary will become one of the group’s most important units as a result of the doubling of its production area. At the same time, production of electric models will start next year, a large number of new jobs will be created, and the local infrastructure will be further developed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in Kecskemét on Thursday.
The minister toured the new production hall of Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary Kft., which is under construction, and then presented the Order of Merit of Hungary to Christian Wolff, the company’s managing director, in recognition of his work in promoting the growth of the Hungarian automotive industry.
In his speech, Péter Szijjártó stated that the future backbone of the European economy will clearly be the electric car industry, and one of the flagship companies of this industry is Mercedes, which has placed the focus of its electromobility strategy in Hungary. He underlined that the countries that will grow fastest and most dynamically will be those that can attract the most investment in electric cars.
The foreign minister stressed that
the German company’s growing capacity in Hungary will make a major contribution to “Hungary becoming one of, if not the most, important center of the European electric car industry.”
“New production halls are being built, which will house the new bodywork and new assembly lines. Thanks to all these developments, production of models based on the new electric platform will start next year. A large number of new jobs will be created and the infrastructure in Kecskemét will continue to develop,” the minister emphasized.
Mercedes-Benz, which employs nearly 5,000 people in Hungary, is bringing higher-end and technologically added-value models to Hungary following a major investment announced last year. Production of these will start in 2024, and thanks to the developments, the Kecskemét plant will become one of the most important production units of the entire group.
Works have already started at the Hungarian Mercedes plant. Photo: MTI/Bús Csaba
Szijjártó added that the company’s presence has a significance beyond itself, it is also about training young Hungarian talent, as the company has played a pioneering role in dual vocational training in Hungary.
“Mercedes, Mercedes managers here, German colleagues working at Mercedes help us to ensure that German TV viewers do not only hear bad things about us, German newspaper readers do not only read bad things about us, but can get a little closer to the real picture of what is happening here in Hungary,” he said.
Szijjártó highlighted that in 2022 the Hungarian automotive industry had its best year ever, with the sector employing 150,000 people and its production value exceeding HUF 12 billion (EUR 32 million), and its export ratio at around 90 percent. In addition, the momentum has been maintained after the first figures for this year show that the sector increased its output by 40 percent, the minister added. He also pointed out that German companies continue to be the largest investor community in Hungary.
Featured photo via Facebook/Péter Szijjártó