Hungary is located in the centre of Europe, north west of Romania. The population of Hungary is 10 million, 1.8 million of which lives in the capital, Budapest. The population is expected to decrease to 9.7 million in 2030, with the proportion of people over 65 increasing from 25% to 33% over the same period. Hungarian is the official language, although German is widely spoken and English increasingly used in business. Half the population claim to be Catholic. The Forint is the official currency, worth approximately €0.003. The standard rate of VAT is 27%.

Hungary                               Capital: Budapest



10 million à 9.7 million (2030)

Proportion of people over 65 is 25% à 33% (2030)


Mostly Hungarian, some German


50% Catholic

GDP / head

€ 10,100   (EU average: € 25,100)


Forint (€0.003)



GDP growth (volume)



-0.1% in 2012 (f)

1.4% in 2013 (f)

Unemployment rate

(Feb 2012)

11.0%   (EU average: 10.2%)

Inflation rate

3.9%   (EU average: 3.1%)


Figures relate to 2011, except where indicated.                                      Source: Eurostat, Searce (2012)


Hungary has a GDP per capita of €9,700, compared to the EU average of €24,400 in 2010. According to the OECD, the Hungarian economy grew by 1.5% in 2011, but is expected to fall by 0.6% in 2012 before growing by 1.1% in 2013 (compared to the Eurozone average growth of 1.6%, 0.2% and 1.4% respectively). The inflation rate was 4.1% in 2011, compared to 3% in the EU. The unemployment rate was 10.9%, compared to 9.8% in the EU as a whole in 2011.  

Business negotiations can often take some time in Hungary, and socialising is an important of the business culture. Hence small talk is common and it is sometimes considered rude if you want to get straight to business. Contracts tend to be statements of intent and can change subject to changing circumstances.