Hungary flag Hungary: Economic and Political Overview

The political framework of Hungary

Political Outline

Current Political Leaders
President: Katalin Novak (since 10 May 2022) - Fidesz
Prime Minister: Viktor Orban (since 29 May 2010) - Fidesz
Next Election Dates
Presidential: 2027
National Assembly: April 2026
Current Political Context
The right-wing Fidesz party and its leader Viktor Orban have been dominating the political scene in Hungary for the last 13 years. The election took place in April 2022 and saw a landslide victory for the Fidesz-KDNP party, which obtained 135 seats out of 199. The coalition United for Hungary secured a total of 57 seats, while 6 seats went to the nationalist party Our Homeland.
Katalin Novak – the former Minister for Family - from Fidesz was elected as the first female President in March 2022. Despite the challenging economic (rise in energy and food prices) and political (Russia-Ukraine war) situation, support for the Fidesz-KDNP party went back to levels seen before the elections campaign.
Relations with the European Commission remain tense in light of the “conditionality mechanism” which subjects disbursement to the rule of law in the respective country, causing disputes with the EU over the release of funds to Hungary. Furthermore, in December 2023 Prime Minister Viktor Orban vetoed a USD 54.5 billion European Union aid package for Ukraine.
Main Political Parties
Hungary is a multi-party democracy largely divided between the conservative right and opposition. The three main parties/coalitions at the latest election were:

- Fidesz-Hungarian Civic Alliance (Fidesz): centre-right, nationalist, socially conservative, most popular party across all legislative districts. It currently holds a majority in the National Assembly with 135 seats and has maintained control of the presidency since 2010. Furthermore, it has supported the election of every president since 2000
- United for Hungary: a big tent coalition formed by the following parties: Hungarian Socialist Party, Democratic Coalition, Movement for a Better Hungary (Jobbik), LMP – Hungary's Green Party, Dialogue for Hungary and the Momentum Movement
- Our Homeland Movement (MHM): far-right, nationalist.

Other parties include:
- Christian Democratic People’s Party (KDNP): right-wing, propagates national conservatism; acts as a sister organisation of Fidesz
- Jobbik: initially far-right and anti-EU, the party has switched to more mainstream right political line
- Politics Can Be Different (LMP): centre, green-liberal, champions protection of the environment, supports sustainable development and aims to work against corruption
- National Self-Government of Germans in Hungary (MNOÖ): German-Hungarian interests
- Momentum Movement: centrist, liberal.
Executive Power
The President is the Chief of State and the Prime Minister is the Head of Government. The President is elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term (eligible for a second term). The Prime Minister is elected by the National Assembly on the recommendation of the President.
The Cabinet is a Council of Ministers elected by the National Assembly on the recommendation of the President; other ministers are proposed by the Prime Minister and appointed and relieved of their duties via the presidential elections.
Legislative Power
The Hungarian Parliament is unicameral. The National Assembly is composed of 199 members elected every four years and can either initiate new legislation or approve those introduced by the Government. Out of the total, 106 members are directly elected in single-member constituencies by simple majority vote and 93 members are directly elected in a single nationwide constituency by party-list proportional representation vote.
 

Indicator of Freedom of the Press

Definition:

The world rankings, published annually, measures violations of press freedom worldwide. It reflects the degree of freedom enjoyed by journalists, the media and digital citizens of each country and the means used by states to respect and uphold this freedom. Finally, a note and a position are assigned to each country. To compile this index, Reporters Without Borders (RWB) prepared a questionnaire incorporating the main criteria (44 in total) to assess the situation of press freedom in a given country. This questionnaire was sent to partner organisations,150 RWB correspondents, journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists. It includes every kind of direct attacks against journalists and digital citizens (murders, imprisonment, assault, threats, etc.) or against the media (censorship, confiscation, searches and harassment etc.).

World Rank:
92/180
 

Indicator of Political Freedom

Definition:

The Indicator of Political Freedom provides an annual evaluation of the state of freedom in a country as experienced by individuals. The survey measures freedom according to two broad categories: political rights and civil liberties. The ratings process is based on a checklist of 10 political rights questions (on Electoral Process, Political Pluralism and Participation, Functioning of Government) and 15 civil liberties questions (on Freedom of Expression, Belief, Associational and Organizational Rights, Rule of Law, Personal Autonomy and Individual Rights). Scores are awarded to each of these questions on a scale of 0 to 4, where a score of 0 represents the smallest degree and 4 the greatest degree of rights or liberties present. The total score awarded to the political rights and civil liberties checklist determines the political rights and civil liberties rating. Each rating of 1 through 7, with 1 representing the highest and 7 the lowest level of freedom, corresponds to a range of total scores.

Ranking:
Free
Political Freedom:
3/7

Political freedom in the world (interactive map)
Source: Freedom in the World Report, Freedom House

 

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Latest Update: February 2024

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