Govt approves first, HUF 6,000bn phase of economic recovery plan

voThe government has decided on the initial HUF 6,000bn phase of the Economic Recovery Action Plan, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in a weekly interview on public radio on Friday.

Until mass vaccination against the coronavirus starts, Mr Orban told Kossuth Radio, „protecting workplaces will be the most important thing”, but when there is enough vaccine and the country reopens, the government will launch its Economic Recovery Action Plan.

„We’ve already approved the first chapter, and we’ve already decided on HUF 6,000bn of recovery measures,” he said.

Mr Orban said higher education would be the „biggest winner” in the Economic Recovery Action Plan as a development programme is launched at universities on a scale „unprecedented in Hungarian history”.

„In the coming 1-2 years, we’re going to invest HUF 1,500bn in Hungarian universities,” he said.


Mr Orban said the Covid-19 vaccination rollout is „progressing well” as the inoculation of healthcare workers has been completed and inoculation of nursing home residents and staff will finish by Sunday.

He said vaccination on the basis of registration would start from the beginning of the coming week, following the established order that gives the elderly and those with chronic illnesses priority.

He urged Hungarians who want to be vaccinated to register to indicate their intention, noting that vaccination is voluntary and free of charge.

The vaccination rollout is entering „a new phase”, he said, adding that how many people will register remains „a big issue”.

He said registration numbers are „in the neighbourhood of 2m” at present.

„We all know that this is too little for the entire society to gain immunity,” he added, encouraging people to register and get vaccinated.

„I’ll get vaccinated, too. I’ll have my turn,” Mr Orban said, acknowledging that people may have preferences regarding the vaccine they get and disclosing that he would prefer to be inoculated with the Chinese vaccine.

„The Chinese have known this virus for the longest, and I’ll presume that they probably know the most about it. So I’ll wait my turn, and if I can choose, I’ll ask for the Chinese vaccine,” he added.

Mr Orban said Hungary could contract delivery of the Chinese Covid-19 vaccine „today or tomorrow”.

Calculating inoculation numbers without the Chinese vaccine, Mr Orban said 880,000 Hungarians could be vaccinated, including second jabs, by early March.

„If the Chinese vaccine comes, we could double that, and if the Russian vaccine arrives, we could be even faster,” he said.

„We could find ourselves in a radically different position around Easter,” he added.