Hungary rejects new EU labor guidelines


Hungary’s socialist government rejected Monday labor guidelines drawn up by the European Union’s labor ministers last week.

The new regulations would cause “even fewer Hungarians to work even more,” the Hungarian Minister of Social Affairs and Labor Erika Szűcs told reporters Monday in Budapest. At present, Hungary’s employment rate is around 7 to 8% lower than the EU average while the number of hours worked is about 1.7% under the average in the bloc, she added. Aim of the Hungarian government was to increase the “number of those employed and not the hours worked,” Szűcs said.

The agreement limits the hours employees in the EU can work per week to 48 hours, but allows them to boost that limit to 60 hours if they choose to sign a so-called “opt-out.” To protect the employee from abuse, the deal also says that they can only agree to the extra hours once they have been in the job for a month, and that they cannot be sanctioned at work for refusing to sign the opt-out or for withdrawing from it.

The low rate of employment in Hungary is mainly a result of generous social welfare benefits. It is more attractive for many people to retire early, obtain children’s allowances or apply for social security than to work regularly. (m&


Business Sentiment Up, Consumer Confidence Down in September Analysis

Business Sentiment Up, Consumer Confidence Down in September

Horthy Statue to be Unveiled in Parliament Parliament

Horthy Statue to be Unveiled in Parliament

UPS Appoints Regional Director Appointments

UPS Appoints Regional Director

Completion of Metro Line M3 Renovation Delayed City

Completion of Metro Line M3 Renovation Delayed


Producing journalism that is worthy of the name is a costly business. For 27 years, the publishers, editors and reporters of the Budapest Business Journal have striven to bring you business news that works, information that you can trust, that is factual, accurate and presented without fear or favor.
Newspaper organizations across the globe have struggled to find a business model that allows them to continue to excel, without compromising their ability to perform. Most recently, some have experimented with the idea of involving their most important stakeholders, their readers.
We would like to offer that same opportunity to our readers. We would like to invite you to help us deliver the quality business journalism you require. Hit our Support the BBJ button and you can choose the how much and how often you send us your contributions.