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Hungary Has Started to Rebuild its Defence Industry in Good Time

Text: defence.hu / MTI | Photo: Sztaniszláv Horváth |  15:07 May 14, 2024

Hungary has started to rebuild its defence industry in good time and with an appropriate strategy – said Defence Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky on Friday, 10 May at the Hungarian Defense Industry Summit conference in the Bálna Defence Centre.


The minister recalled that the world drifted into direct danger of war two years ago, and the renewed world competition of great powers has changed radically the relation of governments and citizens to security. He added that more and more states are increasing their defence spendings but last year Hungary reached the 2 percent level of GDP required by NATO. He said that Hungary realized the importance of armed forces development after the 2010 change of government and that it cannot exist without an independent, supportive defence industry from the point of view of military sovereignty. Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky pointed out that this is also important because via reaching export markets, this sector of the industry can be a new cylinder in the engine of the economy. He also added that the goal is that an increasing proportion of GDP be produced by the defence industry. He recalled that the defence industry plants operating and manufacturing today have been created from almost nothing within only a few years. The Lynx infantry fighting vehicles are being manufactured in Zalaegerszeg, small arms are being manufactured in Kiskunfélegyháza, the components of Airbus helicopters are being manufactured in Gyula, an ammo plant is being built in Várpalota, the integration of the Gidrán tactical vehicles is in progress in Kaposvár and the base vehicles will soon be manufactured in Győr.


Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky called it a distinguished task of the government to create circumstances among which an increasing number of local companies can join the defence industry production.

The founding president of the conference organizer EuroArlantic Ltd., Tamás Fellegi, former Minister for National Development, in his speech talked about the disappearance of the geopolitical order inherited from the 20th century, which gives way to a 21st-century one, in which warfare will be dramatically transformed, thus setting radically new quantitative and qualitative requirements to defence industry players. He noted that by the 2020s, it has been about time that military industry and the backing research, innovation and technological base transformed. He also said that the acceptance of the European Defence Industrial Strategy (EDIS) is an important milestone, its aim is to strengthen the competitiveness and preparedness of the long underfunded and fragmented European defence industry. According to him, increasing the defence readiness of the EU and its member states will also directly strengthen NATO.