On October 14, Mihály Varga, Minister of National Economy, led Hungary’s delegation to the 2017 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund. “Recognizing our country’s economic policy decisions, the International Monetary Fund once again improved Hungary’s growth prospects in comparison to its spring forecast,“ stated Minister Varga.

At the Annual Meetings, Minister Varga signed a technical assistance agreement with Cyril Muller, Vice President of the World Bank for Europe and Central Asia. “The goal of this project is to help the Hungarian labor organization provide tailored support and services to job seekers based on their real-life situations and needs” explained Minister Varga. He added “The agreement will help alleviate labor shortages in Hungary. We will continue to count on the expertise of the World Bank to help implement Hungarian policy concepts.”

At the invitation of Poul Thomsen, Director of the IMF’s European Department, Minister Varga took part in a meeting of Central and Southeast European Finance Ministers and Central Bankers regarding the state of the global and regional economy. Although the IMF paints a much more positive picture of the global economy than in recent years, it considers the current economic recovery to be an excellent opportunity for national decision-makers to further reduce existing risks and implement structural reforms for long-term growth without bearing significant social costs. Minister Varga highlighted: “It’s indicative of the effectiveness of Hungarian economy policy that the IMF, in addition to credit rating agencies, investors and analysts, has improved its outlook for Hungary in its most recent report.”

Ágnes Hornung, Hungarian State Secretary for Financial Affairs, conducted negotiations with several international credit rating agencies and financial institutions in Washington, and participated in a meeting of major investors organized by Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Over the course of the meetings, Hungary’s macroeconomic environment, growth outlook and budgetary situation were reviewed in detail. Ágnes Hornung also took part in a roundtable discussion with members of the US-Hungary Business Council, which focused on bilateral economic relations. Secretary Hornung outlined that “Investors, analysts and fund managers are very positive about the state of the Hungarian economy, its future prospects, and the direction of Hungarian economic policy as a whole.”