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Industrial output down 13.7 percent in December

Industrial output in Hungary was an annual 13.7 percent lower in December 2023, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said on Tuesday, reporting its first estimate.

Based on working-day adjustments, it was 8.7 percent lower year on year, as there were two fewer working days compared with the same month in 2022.

Month on month, output fell by 0.3 percent, according to seasonally and working day-adjusted data.

The war in Ukraine and sanctions weighed on the economy, while low demand linked to a weak European economy also dragged down industrial exports, the national economy ministry said, commenting on Tuesday’s KSH data.

Output was also held back by the shutdown of some companies at year-end, especially in vehicle production, the ministry said in a statement.

The government’s aim this year is to restore growth and for the economy to grow by around 4 percent, the statement said, adding that this meant restoring consumption and boosting labour market activity further, while the investment level must be kept above 25 percent.

The government operates various schemes to help entrepreneurs dismantle any obstacles to growth, ensuring the right amount of energy is available at a decent price, a qualified and sufficient workforce is provided, and that there are financing opportunities for investments, the statement added.

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