Viktor Orbán – Photo: PMO

Orbán discusses digitalisation with Deutsche Telekom chief executive

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán discussed the challenges and achievements related to digital developments in Hungary with Timotheus Hoettges, chief executive of German telecommunications giant Deutsche Telekom, in Budapest on Tuesday, his press chief said.

Orbán and Hoettges were in agreement that Hungary’s ability to capitalise on the opportunities offered by digitalisation was critical to its future, Bertalan Havasi said. Hungary and Deutsche Telekom continue to consider each other strategic partners in advancing digitalisation, they said.

Deutsche Telekom’s local unit Magyar Telekom has speeded up its developments in recent years, with its gigabit wired network now available at 2.9 million endpoints, Hoettges said, adding that some 1 million people have already used the company’s 5G network launched last year.

Modern telecommunications networks and free and discount services offered by service providers have contributed greatly to the management of the situation caused by the pandemic, he said. The “hunger for data” has continued to grow after the end of the lockdowns, Hoettges said. Some content providers. however, were failing to contribute to the development of networks, while telecommunications companies were not only bearing the costs of those developments but also their tax burdens, he said.

Though Hungary ranks well on the European Union’s Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) in terms of network services, more developments, investments and a supporting tax policy are needed for it to move further up, he said.

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