Daily News Hungary | Mar 24, 2019 | 1
Labour market: propaganda v. reality
168ora.hu reports that there are major differences between what the propaganda of Fidesz says about the labour market’s current status and the actual situation of it: the propaganda plays with statistics to cover the reality and show a favourable picture.
As another success, in their report on the first quarter of the year, NGM and Fidesz say that the government of Orbán managed to halve the unemployment, which was doubled by the former Socialist government, and they could increase employments by 600 thousand people in 6 years, thus, it is 4.3 million now.
However, the site writes that it is not quite the situation: the Socialists did not double the unemployment rate, for it was about 6-7% pre-Depression. Besides, it increased similarly in other countries thanks to the Depression. Moreover, the all-time low was reached by the Orbán government in the first quarter of 2013, when the rate raised to 11.8%.
Then the strengthening by public work started: there were less than 50,000 public workers in 2010 but this number became 224,000 this year. While the forer official data barely included those working abroad, currently a number of 140,000 also improves the statistics. Even though their actual number is about twice as many this still makes the unemployment rates seem much better. Also, about 100,000 people disappeared from the register.
Therefore, to have a more realistic view, the official data shall be corrected by approximately 350 thousand, for actually everybody is taken for employed whose public burdens increase the income of the Hungarian budget. This is very misleading, for the people working abroad and people working as public workers rather decrease than increase this amount: this year nearly 400 billion HUF went there. Furthermore, the number of people working in the public sector and central bureaucracy increased in the last 6 years.
The real situation may be shown by the private sector: the number of employments did not increase that much, by the beginning of the year it was barely more than before the Depression. About the GDP, the site suggests the comparison of the economic performance and the official employment data of the past 6 years, as they show major contradictions.
While the government is proudly saying that they raised the employment rate by 16% since 2010, during the same time the GDP of Hungary only increased by about 8%. Thus, the economic performance per one worker visibly decreased, meaning that productivity is getting worse. The data of the past 2-3 years especially show the difference: compared to last year’s first quarter, this year 3% more people worked than before, while the GDP raised by only 0.4%.
This suggests bad structural processes and the decrease of competitiveness, which are also illustrated by the comparing lists of international organizations. The reason seems to be the particularly low efficiency usage of EU supports, for the macro numbers were improved but the mobilization of the economy was barely helped.
Moreover, according to the statistics the labour market appears to be improving, yet there is a huge labour shortage in the internationally most dynamically improving sectors. The untrained public workers cannot join the private sector but get into a permanent state of dependency, while the highly trained labourers barely join the most sought-after fields.
This is happening partly because of the educational system, partly because of the situation in the country. Some of the workers, mainly the most trained ones, go abroad and seek work there, quickening the brain drain here. Hence, it would be rather important to stop these processes, deal with the possible solutions to prevent educated people leaving the country, and find the conceptual steps toward that.
Copy editor: bm