Hungary is employing all means to cut the jobless rate and address youth unemployment, Prime Minister Viktor Orban told a conference in Paris on Tuesday.
Orban said Hungary is making use of all methods mitigate the problem, which he called worryingly high in Europe.
“In fact we in Hungary play all instruments”, Orban told Hungarian journalists after the conference, a European summit of presidents, prime ministers, labour ministers and heads of European institutions to discuss the problem.
Orban said that participants had proposed solutions that are already part of Hungarian law. He mentioned the government’s job-protection programme and a scheme helping young people to become entrepreneurs.
He said that the simplest way to reduce unemployment, “as everybody in Europe knows”, is to cut taxes or social security contributions, but since all countries are indebted, they are trying to come up with solutions which do not involve tax cuts. Yet the real “recovery” is impossible without tax cuts which lead to economic growth, he said.
Participants in the Paris conference finalised a proposal, still to be approved by the European Parliament, under which the EU would allocate funds to mitigate the problem of youth unemployment, Orban said. He added that Hungary could receive 15 billion forints (EUR 50m) from those funds once the proposal is passed.
The European Union has nearly 6 million young unemployed, on average 24 percent of people under 25. The situation is the worst in Spain and Greece, where 56 and 61.5 percent, respectively, of people between 18 and 24 have no jobs. The rate of youth unemployment in Hungary is 27 percent.