“Hungary’s strategic goal is to be competitive and successful in the new global economic era, in which there is a close relationship between production and digitalisation”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó emphasised in Győr at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the country’s first Higher Education and Industrial Cooperation Centre being constructed at the Széchenyi István University with government funding of 14.2 billion forints (EUR 46M). Construction of the 4700 square metre centre is expected to be completed in July.
In his speech, Mr. Szijjártó said that the Government had entered this “tough” global economic competition with an “excellent entry form”. “We have the lowest rates of corporation tax and personal income tax in Europe and the Government is continuously decreasing the burdens on employment, in addition to which it has established a programme for promoting and financing foreign investment”, he explained.
“In the interests of achieving success, the Government has set as its goal that budget expenditure on research & development should reach 1.8 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020, and increase further to 3 percent by 2030”, he announced.
“Countries who are the first to combine production and digitalisation will be the ones to achieve success”, he declared.
Mr. Szijjártó highlighted the fact that the Government has already realised the development projects required to enable everyone throughout the whole country to have access to a 30 megabit/second internet connection by the end of next year, which also provides the foundations for state-of-the-art industrial production. By 2020, one hundred Mb/s broadband internet will be available across all of Hungary.
“The automotive industry, electronics and IT provide the backbone of the Hungarian economy, and it is these sectors that are at the forefront of developing new economic technologies. Future success will depend on whether we have enough professionals who conform to the requirements posed by the new era”, he said.
“Accordingly, the Government has established a four-participant model including a leading company in its field of industry, a university, local municipality and government, which with government funding will establish research and technological workshops built on the open university concept, that enable closer cooperation between the higher education institutions and enterprises of the given region”, he continued.
“Eight such Higher Education and Industrial Cooperation Centres will be established in the first phase, the first and largest state-funded Centre being the one in Győr”, he announced.
“The Governments’ expectations with regard to the Centre in Győr is that it will educate the continent’s most highly trained automotive industry engineers and perform research that enables Hungary to become a centre for automotive industry research. Research and cooperation should also increase the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises that would like to appear on the international market”, Mr. Szijjártó explained.
The Minister added that logistics research and research relating to engines, electromotors and turbochargers will be conducted at the Centre, as well as development required to enable the region’s small and medium-sized enterprises to appear on the international market.
Mayor of Győr Zsolt Borkai (Fidesz-KDNP) said that in his opinion the Government is funding ideas that create value, adding that the City is working to provide the required environment, such as for example the cooperation between the Széchenyi István University, Audi Hungaria Cls. and the local government.
Chairman of Audi Hungaria’s board of directors Peter Kössler stressed that the Centres will enable even closer cooperation between the company and the university. There are currently eight Audi departments operating within the hunger education institution.
Rector of the Széchenyi István University spoke about the fact that the Centres enable a two-way transfer of knowledge between the fields of industry and higher education, the mutual advantages of which can be successfully exploited by both parties.
(Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade/MTI)