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Hungaryʼs fostered workers being absorbed by private sector

Recent developments on the labor market indicate that private companies increasingly hire so-called fostered workers (those on public works schemes). However, they need extensive training considering that most of them have only low qualifications.

According to the latest figures released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH), the number of fostered workers has dropped almost 20% year on year. The tendency has been confirmed by trade organizations for pro-government daily newspaper Magyar Idők, which indicated that private companies are increasingly turning towards fostered workers given the lack of available labor force on the market.

Between January and May this year, on average 150,000 people were working in fostered jobs schemes, which means that private companies absorbed about 100,000 from this area. This is a significant change compared to 2016; before that, companies were not eager to hire fostered workers.

This development is related to the high labor shortage, but companies need to invest massively in providing professional skills to those coming from fostered jobs, as many of them, roughly 84,000 have barely completed eight primary school years.

From a regional point of view, fostered workers are basically missing in Western Hungary, while most work on such schemes in the northeast of country.