Economic growth in Hungary is moving in an increasingly unsustainable direction, writes Népszava, with industrial production declining and foreign trade deficits and inflation rising.
Hungarian industrial production decreased by 2.3% in September compared to the previous year and by 0.3% compared to August, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) announced. This means that production levels were broadly similar to those before the epidemic in September 2019.
KSH recorded an increase in the majority of the manufacturing sub-sectors, including the production of food, beverages and tobacco products. However, Hungarian vehicle production has declined significantly, mainly due to factory shutdowns due to the global semiconductor shortage. Manufacturing of computer, electronic and optical products, where shortages of microchips are also a problem, has also decreased.
A pleasant surprise came from retail, however: retail sales in September were 5.8% higher than a year ago. In the first nine months, Hungarians spent an average of 2.8% more in stores than a year earlier.
According to Mariann Trippon at CIB Bank, the short-term outlook for industrial production is not rosy, and global supply-side tensions will remain with us for the next few quarters. However, household consumption was strong this year, and solid growth in this area is expected in 2022 as well, the newspaper writes.