Hungary economic growth set to accelerate in second half


Hungary's economy is expected to grow at a sluggish pace in the first half of this year, but the tempo is set to pick up in the second half, perhaps lifting full-year GDP growth over 1%, National Economy Minister Mihály Varga said on public television late Wednesday. "Hungary is coming out of the recession, Hungary is starting out on a path of growth," Varga said on M1's Híradó programme. Data published by the Central Statistics Office (KSH) early Wednesday showed Hungary's economy grew by 0.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q1, after contracting 0.4% in Q4. Revisions to earlier published data showed Hungary came out of recession - in the conventional sense of two consecutive quarters of negative growth - in Q3 of last year, earlier than previously thought. The government recently lowered its projection for GDP growth this year to 0.7% from 0.9%. Varga said the fresh GDP data would not affect a package of fiscal adjustments announced by the government on Friday. "I can say that if the government wants to assess this decision [on the fiscal adjustments], it could obviously only happen in the summer," he added.


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