The government’s family policies are geared towards supporting young couples planning families and ensuring their continued welfare, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told the 4th Demographic Summit in Budapest.
Financial incentives and property subsidies are among effective measures addressing demographic problems, Orbán said, adding that the government’s aim was to “make the whole country family friendly”. Meanwhile, the legal framework has been established to protect children and the institution of the family. Whereas crude handouts were “easy” to implement and “required little intelligence”, support had to be offered in a way that also allowed the economy to grow, he said. “We’re spending 5% of Hungarian GDP on families,” Orbán noted. “We haven’t progressed as far as we would have liked, but we’re around halfway there.” Orbán added that without Hungary’s novel family policies, some 120,000 fewer children would have been born over the past ten years.
The number of marriages had almost doubled since 2010 and the number of abortions had dropped by 41%, he added. The mere act of holding a conference on demographics in itself reflected a choice of values, he said. “We’re here though because instead of enduring the demographic trends, we want to shape them.”