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MNB governor urges establishment of Carpathian Basin innovation region

Hungarian central bank governor György Matolcsy (pictured) yesterday called for the creation of a Carpathian Basin innovation region that could help boost the regionʼs economic development.

Speaking at a conference organized by the central bankʼs Foundation of Pallas Athene Domus Innovationis (PADI), the governor of the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) said small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME), universities and trade chambers would have key roles in shaping the region of innovation. The Carpathian Basin will require allies, he said.

Matolcsy said innovation was the engine of growth in the Carpathian Basin. He said the central bank must uncover the regionʼs "centers of knowledge" and dynamic SMEs that can help enhance innovation and economic development in the area.

The MNB governor noted that the bankʼs Funding for Growth Scheme has helped 28,000 SMEs obtain loans, giving them the chance to grow. He said the central bankʼs acquisition of a majority stake in the Budapest Stock Exchange was also aimed at strengthening SMEs, now through the capital market.

Matolcsy said Hungaryʼs banking sector would undergo further changes to allow it to better contribute to the development of innovative companies.

He said Budapest is now an innovation hub akin to the innovation districts of London or Paris.