Győr has contributed a great deal to Hungary’s economic strength
28. 04. 2017.
On Friday, after signing a cooperation agreement with Mayor Zsolt Borkai at a press conference held as part of the Győr stage of the Modern Cities Programme, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that Győr has contributed a great deal to Hungary’s economic strength – not only in terms of forints paid in taxes, but also self-confidence.

Speaking about the details of the agreement, he said that Győr’s ring road must be completed, and Route 8311 will be refurbished. The latter development is currently in the planning phase, and construction work will begin next year. The Government has allocated three billion forints for the project. A new bridge across the Moson-Danube is required for the inner bypass road, and seven billion forints will be available for this; construction work will have to start in 2019.

Twenty billion forints has been allocated to the phased refurbishment of Győr National Theatre and its surroundings, and a new concert hall and a conference centre may also be built in the city.

A cycle route will be created alongside Route 82 between the county capital and Pannonhalma from an allocation of four billion forints, and the city and regional bus terminal and railway station will be renovated and linked together – which will involve construction of a pedestrian underpass. With respect to this development the Prime Minister noted that the city leadership will have to decide whether they wish to provide for local public transport via the North Hungary Transport Centre, or via a new municipality-owned company; they will likewise have to clarify procurement of electric buses.

Photo: Károly Árvai

A new ambulance station will be created at the hospital, and the hospital’s parking facilities will be enlarged using an allocation of three billion forints, the Prime Minister said, adding that funding and state-owned premises will also be allocated for sports and leisure functions.

The idea of linking Győr and Dunaszerdahely (Dunajská Streda) with a dual carriageway was also raised at the meeting. Mr. Orbán pledged to arrange for construction of the Hungarian section, while there will be talks with the Slovakian government regarding the section across the border.

He also spoke about enlargement of the University of Győr, about which he said that “our governments do not close down universities, but establish universities”.

Photo: Károly Árvai

Mr. Orbán referred to Győr as an exceptional city. He stressed that Hungary needs successful provincial cities for its success in the future.

The Prime Minister reminded his audience that after 2010 the Government had relieved the city of a debt burden of 7.8 billion forints, and has since channelled development funds of 230 billion forints to the county capital.

Hungary needs high-level vocational and university training, higher wages and a demographic growth programme

In answer to a question regarding labour shortages, the Prime Minister said that Hungary needs high-level vocational and university training, higher wages and a long-range demographic growth programme.

The country is very close to full employment, and before long “there will be a shortage of skilled labour in Nyíregyháza, just as much as there is in Győr”, he said, adding that he therefore believes that, in the long run, remedying labour shortages in Győr by bringing in people from the eastern part of the country is not a good approach.

In relation to the programme for demographic growth, he pledged that “we must pursue a clear economic and social policy that concentrates on demography” after the 2018 parliamentary election – which, he said, “we hope will be in order”.

Fotó: Árvai Károly

Answering a question, Mr. Orbán said that he is happy to have the opportunity to work together with Mayor of Győr Zsolt Borkai – who is also President of the Hungarian Olympic Committee – and he would like to continue cooperating with him in the future, in relation to both Győr and the Olympic movement.

Regarding sports management, the Prime Minister observed that in 2010 he had proposed that there should not be a state sports administration system, but that the Hungarian Olympic Committee should act as the national sports authority. This, however, was a mistake, he said, and an impossible task; there will therefore be a return to a state sports administration authority, with the Olympic movement functioning independently of this, he said.

When distributing development funds, the Prime Minister said, efforts must also be made to give smaller settlements a chance to join the Hungarian economy’s bloodstream, and at the same time we should also guarantee the further strengthening of settlements “which achieve results”. He added that Hungary is one community and one nation, and with good policy it is possible to balance the distribution of grants.

He also mentioned that Győr is the twenty-second city in the Modern Cities Programme. In future medium-sized settlements will also be supported, and in the final phase a village development programme will be launched, because Hungary has a vested interest in an economically strong countryside.

Photo: Károly Árvai

Mayor Borkai said that the agreement now signed will determine the city’s development for the next 15 to 20 years. The goal is for Győr to grow into a city of 300,000 for which tourism, culture and education will ensure a liveable environment for everyone.

The Mayor thanked the Government for its past and future support, mentioning as an example the infrastructure developments connected to the European Youth Olympic Festival (EYOF), for which the Government provided funding of 10 billion forints. This, he said, also demonstrates that a sporting event can contribute to the renewal of an entire city.