Magyar Nemzet condemns rumours about an alleged million Hungarians having left their country for Great Britain as vulgar and false electoral propaganda. The Hungarian citizens working in the United Kingdom number about 150 thousand.
Hírhatár, a news website linked to the Democratic Coalition ran a story originating from an unnamed employee of a British employment agency who told the news site that according to a study performed by her organisation, over one million Hungarians had registered as employees in the United Kingdom. The agency soon turned out to be non-existent and official data released by the authorities of both countries put the number of registered Hungarian employees in Great Britain at just under 150 thousand.
In her Magyar Nemzet editorial, Matild Torkos remarks that the story was first published by another news site in June and was immediately dismissed by experts. She finds it therefore all the more curious that it should have been revived just two months before the municipal elections. She invites “extremist left-wing forces” to halt their “machinations” and tell the public instead why they abandoned their natural voting base, blue collar workers and employees in general during the years when they were busy accumulating huge capital during the massive privatization of public property in the 1990s. She admits, nonetheless, that the drain of young people from Hungary is a real problem. Freedom of travel and employment abroad is of course a great novelty for Hungarians who were barred from such options under Communism, she writes. On the other hand, Hungary is also receiving immigrant labour, which is vital for instance in keeping the public health system running. As for the young Hungarians seeking better wages abroad, Torkos concludes, the amount of money they send home each month indicates that they do not intend to stay abroad forever.