The Hungarian government has been criticised from unexpected quarters. The head of the Ost-Auschuss der Deutschen Wirtschaft, a lobby grouping together German economic players in Eastern European markets, says the joint German-Hungarian economic success story is in danger.
On Monday, a German-Hungarian economic forum was held in Berlin on the occasion of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s visit. Speaking at the forum, Philipp Haussmann stressed that the relationship between the two countries is characterised by a strong partnership of mutual benefit. According to Portfolio, he said it is “good and important” that the Hungarian economy is changing, as shown by the significant investments being launched in electromobility, autonomous driving and other new technologies.
However, he is concerned about the difficulties faced by German companies operating in Hungary in certain sectors. These sectors include telecommunications, building materials production, waste processing, banking and insurance services and retail, hvg.hu writes. In these sectors, the government wants the strongest Hungarian-owned companies to develop in their markets. Of course, Haussmann sees this as a legitimate and understandable ambition.
At the same time, there was a growing “well-founded suspicion” among the German businesses concerned that they were “not welcome” in Hungary, he said. Among their difficulties are sectoral special taxes, and they feel that licensing and procurement procedures are opaque and they lack “fair access to justice”, he added.
This leads to uncertainty and jeopardises the German-Hungarian “common success story”, Haussmann explained. He stressed that the involvement of German companies require security of investment, fair public procurement and a framework for the rule of law.
Source: Portfolio, hvg.hu