Allegedly, the budget for this year’s fireworks display on 20th August will not exceed last year’s costs. But what does this mean numerically?
For the time being, the National Tourism Agency is keeping secret how much public money is planned to be spent on the programmes of the state foundation celebrations and the fireworks display, considered to be the biggest in Europe. Accordingly, the exact amount will only be known in 2032, reports the Hungarian news portal Mfor.
Nevertheless, last year’s spending on the fireworks is a good starting point which is underpinned by the official announcement of the National Tourism Agency (MTU). “The traditional fireworks show in central Budapest on the August 20 national holiday will cost a gross EUR 4.11 million (~HUF 1.65 billion), the same amount as last year”. The MTU said that equipment for the show had been purchased in the first half of the year, and dismissed press reports suggesting that the figures were kept confidential.
As the Hungarian news portal Index reports, it should be noted that the tourism agency only mentions the purchase price of the rockets in its announcement, which is only a tiny fraction of the total cost of the celebrations, which will cover four days starting from the 18th until the 21st August.
Additionally, the series of programmes will have further significant costs. According to newly revealed sources, Visit Hungary National Tourism Organisation Nonprofit Plc. has been awarded a total of EUR 25.93 million (~HUF 10.4 billion) for event management services in connection with the four-day celebrations, reports Mfor. Other costs are not yet known.
According to Index, the total cost of last year’s celebration was EUR 29.92 million (~HUF 12 billion). Currently, including the rockets and the organisation of the event, the spendings are around EUR 30.04 million (~HUF 12.05 billion).
Meanwhile, a petition has been initiated against this year’s fireworks that has been signed by 112,000 people so far. According to the organisers of the initiative, “Instead of spending taxpayers’ money on a very polluting and expensive party, the government should spend it on stabilising the economy! There are already many international and domestic examples of how fireworks can be replaced. Whether it’s light shows or light paintings, each alternative is less expensive and causes much less environmental and ecological damage.” As they say, their primary purpose is to “let the government hear that the Hungarian economy is not in a position to throw away hundreds of millions of euros in one night!”
Source: mfor.hu, index.hu