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Hungarian growth rate first in Europe

May 17th, 2019

A left-wing commentator thinks that Hungary’s fast growth rate cannot be sustained. Pro-government columnists find such pessimism ungrounded and politically motivated.

In its preliminary first quarter report on Wednesday, the Central Statistical Office put GDP growth at 5.3 per cent on a year on year basis.

On Napi.hu, László Domokos quotes analysts saying that the Hungarian economy is unlikely to sustain the fast growth pace of the past years. All experts agree that it is in good shape and growth will remain firm – around 4 per cent at the end of 2019.

Népszava’s Miklós Bonta is also skeptical about the sustainability of high growth rates in Hungary. The left-wing columnist suggests that most analysts, including Morgan Stanley, tend to overrate Hungary’s growth potential. Bonta is confident that the Hungarian economy will slow down significantly by the end of the year.

Magyar Nemzet’s Zsolt Bayer points out that GDP growth has for years exceeded expectations by pessimistic left-wing analysts. In light of their past predictions, Bayer thinks ‘we should not give any credence to their tendentious pessimism’.

In Magyar Hírlap, Sándor Faggyas underscores that Hungary’s growth data is the fastest in Europe (Romania claims the same). The pro-government commentator suggests that fast growth is due to the efforts of the government and the National Bank to boost economic output. As Hungary’s growth rate exceeds GDP growth in Western Europe, Hungary can slowly catch up with the wealthier EU member states, Faggyas hopes.

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