News can often be heard about emigration from Hungary and the number of homecomings; however, details on domestic migration often remain in the dark. Nonetheless, it is an important issue as many Hungarians decide to move about within the country, which results in an increasing number of residents in some counties while a decreasing tendency can be observed in other regions. Let’s see last year’s run of domestic migration – which are the winner counties where the population increased significantly and which can be considered ’absolute losers’ regarding this question?

Besides birth and mortality rates, and the amount of emigration and immigration, domestic migration is also an important aspect that needs to be taken into consideration. According to the data of the Hungarian Statistical Office (KSH), last year in Hungary, 280,000 people changed their permanent place of residence while 300,000 decided to modify their temporary place of residence.

In 2018, the net migration rate of the capital showed negative results. Migration loss increased to 3,100 people, supposedly as a result of the enhancement of suburbanisation.

Just like in the previous years, from a territorial aspect, only the Pest region (16,800 people), Western Transdanubia (4,800 people) and Central Transdanubia (2300 people) managed to achieve a positive migration balance. Compared to 2017, migration surplus increased significantly in Pest and Western Transdanubia; however, a growing number of emigration can be examined in the case of the Great Plain and Northern Hungary.

Among the counties, the most attractive places of residence in 2018 were Pest, Győr-Moson-Sopron, Fejér, Vas and Komárom-Esztergom counties; additionally, Veszprém county, too, where an increasing tendency of domestic migration can be observed since 2016.

As describes, the most significant migration difference was between Pest and Győr-Moson-Sopron counties with rates of  13.2 and 9.5 per mille.

  • In the case of Pest county, migration gains were realised mainly from Budapest – 14,000 more people moved from the capital to the county than the other way around.
  • The second most positive migration balance is determined in Győr-Moson-Sopron county with 4,400 people coming from Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén (550 people), Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg (500 people), and Hajdú-Bihar (450 people) counties.
  • As far as Komárom-Esztergom, Vas and Veszprém counties are concerned, their migration surplus was also provided by Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén county.
  • The positive migration balance of Fejér county can be attributed to the migration processes of Pest county and Budapest.

Taking everything into account, the greatest population decrease in 2018 was determined in the Northern Great Plain with 8750 people, and Northern Hungary with 5850 people.

Concerning other counties, Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg and Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén are the ones where the highest number of emigrants were registered, with 5,500 and 4,600 people respectively, mainly moving to Budapest and Pest county, just like in the case of other regions located on the eastern side of the River Danube.

Reasons behind migration supposedly have not changed in the last few years. According to the analysis of the Hungarian Statistical Office, the economic environment is closely related to domestic migration processes. Migration between 2012 and 2017 mainly happened in the direction of people moving from under-developed regions and high unemployment rates to well-developed regions with low unemployment rates. Budapest is the only exception as, besides suburbanisation, daily commute to the capital is another influencing factor.















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