Hungarian action plan seeks to dramatically increase birth rate by 2030

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán announced on Thursday, at the World Congress of Families, held in Budapest, that his government intended to increase the birth rate from 1.5 children per woman to 2.1 by 2030. Hungary’s low birth rate and the decline in population has been a pressing problem for the country since the early nineties and new statistics show that the population has declined to just 9.8 million. At current levels, Hungary’s population will fall to 8.5 million by 2041. In Mr. Orbán’s mind, stopping the out-migration of young, working-age Hungarians or developing an immigration and integration policy is not the primary answer. Instead, as his right-hand man, Fidesz Vice President Szilárd Németh crassly remarked this week: “those who pump the world full of babies will rule the earth.” For those readers who understand Hungarian, there really is no way to demonstrate in translation how graceless Mr. Németh’s words were, referring to Hungarians as breeding machines and claiming: “aki teleszüli a világot, azé a világ…” MP Zsuzsa Szelényi of the liberal Együtt party called it a joke, when male politicians demand that women give birth. She suggested that Mr. Németh should give it a try too.

The goal is to increase the number of child births by 30,000 per year by 2030. No government has been able to turn around demographic trends that have been present since 1980, when the country’s population peaked at 10.7 million. And in the world of demographics, 13 years is not a long time to so dramatically change a long-standing trend.

Mr. Orbán’s action plan, however, includes some concrete measures in the hope of sparking population growth:

  • Any female who owes a student debt will have her outstanding balance cut by 50% if she gives birth to 2 children. With 3 children or more, her entire student debt will be forgiven.
  • Parents who give birth to 3 children will see the outstanding mortgage on their home decline by 1 million forints. Each additional child will result in a subsidy of 1 million forints per newborn, to be applied to the outstanding mortgage balance.
  • The government will build and develop new nurseries and day care programs.
  • Parents with at least two children can expect new tax benefits, although the prime minister did not reveal further details on this aspect of the action plan.
  • The government will also establish a research institute to study demographics and ways to increase the country’s population.

“Where there is space for two children, there is space for three, as well as for a fourth. The braver ones can accommodate five as well,” said Mr. Orbán, who has five kids himself. “The government has come to the simple truth that a little more support means a few more kids, while greater support means a greater number of children,” he added.

Viktor Orbán at the World Congress of Families in Budapest

János Lázár, the minister overseeing the Prime Minister’s Office, noted that the goal was to make child support programs 5% of the nation’s GDP, in the hope that those who are willing to give birth to children begin thinking in families of three or more kids.

The partial student debt forgiveness and funds to pay down outstanding mortgages will be available as of 2018, although it is not immediately clear how this will be built into the next budget.

11 Comments

  1. YES, THE NUMBERS DO COUNT. LOOK AT CHINA, EVEN MARCO POLO NOTICED THAT 700 YEARS AGO.
    BUT JUST HOW THE HELL THE AUTHOR WOULD KNOW HOW MANY KIDS THE P.M. HAS FATHERED ?

    HIS WIFE MAY HAVE GIVEN BIRTH TO FIVE OF HIS CHILDREN, BUT THAT IS NOT SO CONCLUSIVE OF HOW MANY CHILDREN HE HAS FATHERED. (NO PUN INTENDED!)
    PUTIN IS PAYING $25,000 FOR SECOND CHILD.
    MAY BE THE GOVERNMENT NOW START ADDING TESTOSTERONE TO DRINKING WATER ,OR SOMETHING. HM?

  2. Maybe if the government used the tax revenue to actually help its citizens and increase social programs instead of stealing it all for themselves, Hungarians wouldn’t be leaving by the tens of thousands in search of better opportunity. The tax rate here in Hungary is enough that its citizens should be receiving benefits similar to countries like Canada and the US, yet the schools and hospitals are among the worst in the EU, and the pay gap between Hungarians and the rest of the EU continues to grow.

  3. Pingback: “Obiteljaši” u Budimpešti | Bilten

  4. The real question is that just who will be forced to pay for all this?
    Will they institute a special tax like back in the time of the Rakosi regime, the “Bika-penz”?
    That taxed people over 20 who had no children.
    It was very un-popular.
    Only Imre Nagy eliminated it 1953, along with the “beszolgaltatasok”. That made him popular, and become a PM in demand in October of 1956.
    Are we going back to those old tactics?
    Just why people should not be left alone to decide for themselvs?
    Just how in the world any one speeck of “democracy” while do not even have the very basic freedom to consider their very own private life. How many children you wish is not the most private issue?
    This’s like the government want to sleep with you, or dictate how to behave in your private matters.
    One commenter is absolutely correct, give them a better life, than they may decide to have bigger families.

  5. Bendeguz79 says:

    Gabor;
    In case you know, or so many people as all here seem to claim pretty much the same allegations, that politicians stealing all the taxpayers money,
    why nobody takes any legally available steps about it ?
    Seems to me it would be illigal even by present Hungarian laws.
    Please, do not come back and claim that “everybody is corrupt”.
    Just why nobody can ,or not willing to do anything about it ? Beside big mouthing.

    • Hungarian Free Press says:

      Bendeguz79:

      You need to read up on Hungary. To prosecute, you need a state prosecutor’s office that is willing to do its job in a fair and impartial manner. Hungary’s state prosecutor, Péter Polt, is a former Fidesz party member, a former Fidesz Member of Parliament and a widely known lackey of Orbán who will not prosecute anyone suspected of corruption in Fidesz. It’s that simple. Do not expect everyone to keep explaining to you that which is obvious and common knowledge in Hungary.

  6. Bendeguz79 says:

    Dear Hungarian Free Press;

    Did you think that I was suggesting it to any one to take the matter to his/her own hand?!
    May be you need to read up on some basic legal matters.
    The investigative journalists are normally the ones who dig up all the dirt on leading individuals. create publicity, that gets the ball rolling. Than the public pressure makes the law-enforcement officials feel the heat and start doing their job.
    In case they sweep it under the rug, the public will start to move, vote them out, or throw them out.
    Empty talk will accomplish nothing !
    I think the public is just too lazy.

    P.S. Just what does the Hungarian Free Press do, beside spreading gossips?
    Get on the ball and serve the interest of the population !
    Investigate and expose the criminal activities, make all facts public, get the ball rolling !

  7. Bendeguz79 says:

    Dear Hungarian Free Press;
    Under Hungarian ,as well as EU law, any one has the legal right to file a complaint with substantial competent evidence at the public prosecutor’s office.
    The evidence, of cause have to hold up before the court to resault in conviction.
    As in any legal case, otherwise the accused can and may file counter claim, and sue for damages, or for malicious prosecution, or even defomation of character, or even other charges.
    So, it is simple as that. Please take your evidence and file your case. Or hire an attorney to do it on your behalf.
    That’s how the law works.
    The “everybody knows”, or “former Fidesz party member” is not sufficient evidence of a crime. False accusations, innuendos may and will backfire, just like in Canada’s legal system.
    I am more than eager to see the outcome of the case.
    Thank you.

  8. Bendeguz,

    What the hell do you think Hungarian opposition parties and investigative journalists at the anti-corruption news site Átlátszó have been doing for the past 6-7 years? Could you do everyone a favour and actually inform yourself about Hungary before you write idiotic comments? You are behaving like a complete imbecile here.

  9. Bendeguz79 says:

    MAPHISTO;

    OK, you insulted me, hope you had pleasure of doing so.
    But than you have absolutely no right to complain.
    Accept it as it is, have your pleasure in that too.
    Or can blow yourself up in your anger.

    In case yo are sure it can not be corrected, you must live with it, and shut up.

  10. Bendeguz79 says:

    My information from Hungary is that the majority of the people willing to swallow some shit, as long as the previous and even more corrupt politicians are kept out of power.
    That is how it looks in a nut-shell.
    You like it or not. That’s what it is there today.

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