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Hungarian State Debt Drops to 74.5% of GDP at End of 2017

By Abraham Vass // 2018.01.03.

According to preliminary data, Hungary’s state debt as a percentage of GDP declined to 74.5% at the end of last year, Minister for National Economy Mihály Varga said.

Varga also mentioned that the debt calculated according to the European Union’s Maastricht rules had dropped from 76% at the end of 2016. State debt as a proportion of GDP stood at 72.4% at the end of Q3, the latest data from the National Bank of Hungary show. Hungary’s constitution requires year-end state debt relative to GDP to fall every year until it reaches 50%.

According to preliminary data, Hungary’s GDP grew by 4.1% last year, Varga said, adding that the growth rate is expected to increase to 4.3% this year. Growth was mainly driven by an over 20% rise in investment and by tourism. Consumption increased by over 5% last year, with a similar rate expected in 2018. Hungary’s consumer price index was about 3% in 2017, and a similar trend is expected this year. The minister added that The number of jobholders has increased from 3.7 million to over 4.4 million over the past seven years.

Finally, the Fidesz politician claimed that the government’s financial policy will remain unchanged despite the upcoming general election.