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FDI hits record high in first half of 2005

Foreign direct investments in the first half of 2005 brought in an all-time 6-month record of €2.4 billion, business daily Világgazdaság said on Friday. But from December 1 the minimum investment total qualifying for a Hungarian government subsidy will fall to €10 million from the current €50 million. At the same time government subsidies -- today typically accounting for 7-10 % of the total – will continue to decline, said Világgazdaság, citing Economics Ministry information. The minimum of €4 billion of foreign direct investments the ministry expects to have flowed into Hungary this year is the kind
of positive development that creates a virtuous circle, acting as a magnet for future investment, said Világgazdaság. This amount could be even higher if the privatisation of Budapest Airport goes ahead
by December 31. South Korea's top tyre manufacturer Hankook's huge new venture in Hungary is a cruise ship with a flotilla of other Korean investments -- 12-13 significant ones -- coming in its wake. Among them are an LCD and plazma monitor factory, a biotech facility, a pharmaceuticals plant and other technology intensive projects, the paper noted. In the first eight months, new contracts for foreign investments
worth Ft 200 billion were signed, creating 5,000 jobs -- well over official projections in the spring of a total of Ft 150 billion by year's end.