Lake Balaton - Photo: Wikipedia

Regional development minister proposes dialogue on Lake Balaton

Hungary's regional development minister has proposed a dialogue on Lake Balaton involving the business sector, environmental protection and cultural players, local residents and tourists.

Addressing the Balaton Business Forum 2023 conference organised by business news portal Portfolio in Balatonfured on Thursday, Tibor Navracsics said that though for many, Lake Balaton was just a place they spent their summer holidays, for others it was a residential area with worsening sociological indicators.

Real estate prices in the area are incredibly high, making it difficult for young people to buy their first homes, he said, adding that this, too, should be addressed when it came to the Lake Balaton area.

Navracsics detailed the demographic changes in the area, noting that one of the main destinations for migration within Hungary was the triangle of Budapest, Gyor and Veszprem. Suburbanisation is also a factor, mainly in the eastern Lake Balaton area, he added.

These are trends that the real estate market also responds to, with the Lake Balaton area being one of the most expensive housing markets in the country alongside Budapest, Gyor and Debrecen, Navracsics said. This makes it hard for young people to get started in life, leading to an aging local population, he added.

Lake Balaton is a priority area in the current European Union financial cycle, the minister said, adding that in addition to the city of Veszprem, the Bakony-Balaton region also holds the European Capital of Culture title.

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