Hungarians increasingly shopping with bank cards

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Hungarians are using their bank cards to make purchases more frequently, thanks in part to government subsidies for point-of-sale (POS) terminals, but there is still room for improvement, Minister of Finance Mihály Varga told state news wire MTI.   

Last year, Hungarians used their bank cards to make purchases totaling more than HUF 5 trillion, up from just under HUF 4 tln in 2016, but still only one-quarter of total purchases, Varga explained.   

The minister noted that the number of businesses that now accept payment with bank cards has risen to 110,000, from 85,000 at the end of 2016, mainly thanks to government subsidies for POS terminals. Once the subsidy program winds up, almost 80% of Hungarian businesses will have POS terminals, he added. 

The stock of cash in Hungary exceeds HUF 5 tln, the equivalent of 14% of GDP, well over the European Union average of 8%, Varga said.

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