National Military Strategy of Hungary21:27 October 13, 2021
GOVERNMENT OF HUNGARY
Published: the Hungarian Gazette
Resolution 1393/2021 (VI. 24)
on the National Military Strategy of Hungary
Having regard to clause 17 of Parliamentary Resolution 94/1998 (XII.29) on the Principles of the Security and Defence Policy of the Republic of Hungary and clause 2 of Government Resolution 1163/2020 (IV. 21.) on the National Security Strategy of Hungary, hereby adopts the following Resolution:
- The Government hereby establishes the National Military Strategy of Hungary as set out in Annex 1.
- This Resolution shall enter into force on the day following its publication.
- Government Resolution No. 1656/2012 (XII. 20.) on the National Military Strategy of Hungary shall cease to be in force.
( Viktor Orbán )
Annex 1 to Government Resolution 1393/2021. (VI.24.)
The National Military Strategy of Hungary
The defence of the homeland is a whole-of-nation cause. In addition to the development of the capabilities of the armed forces, it requires close cooperation between the organisations involved in national defence, the development of the national defence industry in line with the growth of the economy, broad social cohesion and the commitment of citizens to the defence of their homeland. The National Military Strategy (hereinafter referred to as the Strategy) provides guidance for achieving this.
As a result of the efforts of the Hungarian nation, the Hungarian Government and the Hungarian military, the Zrínyi Defence and Force Development Programme (hereinafter referred to as the Zrínyi HHP) will create a military force worthy of a millennial state, increasing the security of Hungarian citizens, and the military-industrial capacities necessary to maintain it. The renewing Hungarian Defence Forces will develop and organise their capabilities in line with the Government's defence policy considerations, ensuring the defence of the country's sovereignty, territorial integrity and citizens, and the enforcement of its interests. As a result of the force development, Hungary's military self-reliance will increase significantly, which is crucial not only for its self-defence and deterrence capabilities, but also to remain an effective contributor to regional, European and transatlantic security efforts.
Hungary does not consider any state an enemy. Nonetheless, a renewed national armed forces is more vital in the rapidly changing security environment of the 21st century than at any time following the Cold War. The cornerstone of our country's security is the collective defence ensured within the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (hereinafter: NATO), but a national armed forces is the primary prerequisite of this cooperation in alliance.
In our volatile and unpredictable security environment, crises can develop unpredictably directly on Hungary's borders, in our intermediate region or at strategic distances. In a modern globalised world, even distant crises can rapidly spill over into the region and the territory of the country, undermining the security of citizens and the homeland, as the illegal migration crisis of 2015 demonstrated. In addition to non-military means, the more frequent aggressive use of military force is playing an increasing role in the arsenal of state actors. This particularly justifies the reinforcement of national resilience and the strengthening of the capabilities and preparedness of the armed forces, with a view to successfully accomplishing armed defence and collective defence tasks as and when required, and typically international crisis management operations for common causes.
Hungary's strategic objective is to develop the Hungarian Defence Forces by 2030 so as to become a key military force in the region which, as a member of NATO, can ensure the country's security, deter any eventual aggression, support the joint defence by the Government against military and non-military threats and challenges, and fulfil its responsibilities as a member of the Alliance and the European Union. Zrínyi HHP provides the framework for achieving this. In parallel with the implementation of the comprehensive programme, it is a national strategic priority objective for Hungary to become the key defence industrial centre of the region.
The country's military security is based on complementary pillars. One pillar is a state-of-the-art national armed force, complemented by higher level defence systems and forms of collaboration of regional cooperation. The second pillar of the military dimension of our security is the collective defence provided by NATO, complemented by the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) of the European Union (hereinafter: EU), including the mutual assistance clause, as well as the fora for cooperation within the United Nations (hereinafter: UN) and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (hereinafter: OSCE).
Building security is a long-term endeavour that requires long-term investment. Preparing for the threats of tomorrow must start today. The defence of a country is built on complex and interdependent security elements comprising economic, political, social, environmental, cyber and information dimensions alongside the military aspect. Today's state and non-state threats and challenges may occur across the full spectrum of these security dimensions in many combinations, and therefore defence cannot be treated in isolation from other aspects of security. Addressing security challenges goes beyond the competence of individual sector ministries and requires cross-governmental cooperation, while military capabilities will continue to play a key role in the implementation of home defence tasks. In view of the above, the scope of the Strategy shall cover all defence sector activities and organisations involved in the defence of the country and in providing capabilities related to our allied commitments, but shall principally provide guidance to the Hungarian Defence Forces.
Based on the National Security Strategy's assessment of the security environment, and taking into account relevant NATO and European Union documents, the Strategy sets out the deployment environment for the armed forces until the end of the 2020s. It sets out the main principles, directions and parameters for the deployment and sustainment of the armed forces. It defines the objectives and means to transform the Hungarian Defence Forces into a modern, sustainable, flexible and effective force with a balanced structure, with high combat effectiveness, capable of being deployed in a wide range of crisis situations.
In line with the objectives of the other sectoral strategies of the National Security Strategy concerning the implementation of defence tasks, the Strategy provides guidance for the development of the organisational, human, doctrinal, educational, training and leadership areas of the overall defence capabilities, the organisational culture of the Hungarian Defence Forces, the strengthening of national defence cooperation processes and the conscious increase of defence industrial capabilities, in addition to the tasks of force development.
1. THE OPERATIONAL ENVIRONMENT OF THE 21ST CENTURY
The global and European security environment is characterised by instability and unpredictability. Crises in distant regions may have a short-term impact on Hungary's security, increasing the number and scope of threats and challenges to our country. Overall, the global security situation is deteriorating. The shifting balance of power is accompanied by a renewed intensification of superpower rivalries and an increased risk of confrontation.
The rapid development of ITC capabilities, the gradual proliferation of ground-breaking disruptive technologies and the increasing ease and speed of access to them are significantly increasing the number of actors with the potential to have a significant impact on global security, thus increasing unpredictability.
In the 21st century, while the purpose of war remains unchanged, the theatres, forms and means of war are broadening with its characteristics changing and increasingly extending to the non-military dimensions of security. Although the use of military force remains a priority, states are seeking to minimise military confrontation in time and space, and incidents that do not rise to the level of armed conflict and are difficult to monitor are increasingly coming to the fore. In such so-called hybrid warfare, state and non-state actors seek to advance their interests to the detriment of the opposing side through the coordinated use of military and non-military means for a specific strategic objective, and may take steps to exacerbate the challenges and crises threatening Hungary.
Other characteristics of the contemporary operational environment include the active and targeted influencing of domestic and international public opinion via public diplomacy and strategic communications; the manipulation of information channels and social media platforms within the framework of information operations; the fuelling of societal, political and economic instability; the exploitation of crises, along with the use of conditional military and economic-financial assistance as a means to exert influence and pressure. The use of substitute (proxy) forces, criminal and terrorist groups with covert state support and control, and government actors disguised as NGOs, has become more prominent. The emergence of non-military operations automatically implies a blurring of the line between war and peace.
Recent years have seen decisive changes in the global technological environment. Disruptive technologies are overriding existing traditional procedures and application principles, disrupting processes and changing them, even at the risk of taking risks, in a radically new way, by means of a radically new solution or tool, in a revolutionary new direction. One of the characteristics of today's technological developments is that the latest tools and technologies are appearing in civilian trade at the same time as, or even before, the defence sector, in order to gain economic advantage. Artificial intelligence robots in all domains, revolutionary drone swarm technology, human-robot collaborative military task execution, automated decision-making technologies, military applications of 3D printing, cyberspace operations and directed-energy weapons, and military hardware with high precision and autonomous strike measurement capabilities are fundamentally changing the rules and procedures of current warfare. Future theatres of war will see the emergence of smaller adversaries with advanced technological support.
These changes put pressure on international security systems, organisations and procedures tailored to former conventional dimensions of warfare, which therefore need to be modernised in light of new security threats. International (political, legal, economic, security and defence policy-related, arms control, etc.) regimes, together with NATO, the EU and their respective Member States, including Hungary, must continually and flexibly adapt their ends, ways and means to an ever-changing environment.
In modern warfare, the line between the strategic and the tactical level becomes blurred, and the concept of victory has changed: the aggressor no longer needs to occupy the enemy’s territory, destroy its armed forces and equipment, or annihilate its entire economic potential in order to achieve its political objectives. To secure victory, it may prove sufficient to just attack the enemy’s state and public administration command and control facilities and critical infrastructure using strategic strike capabilities and high-precision weapons systems, to disable its communications systems, to impede the political leadership’s ability to act, or to strike the command facilities of the opponent’s armed forces and defence infrastructure– in sum, to gain total control over the target state.
Space, as the domain of deployment of the latest technologies, offers superpowers the opportunity to gain military or security advantage in peacetime already through the deployment of assets over land, sea and oceans, while in times of war to be able to operate strategic weapon systems, provide for an appropriate level of theatre reconnaissance, take full control and carry out strikes if necessary.
In the case of global and regional wars, the opposing parties are able to fight with all means at their disposal and in all theatres of war, without restrictions. In the event of a large-scale and intensive global war, Hungary – as a member of NATO – may be affected as part the European theatre, and may even become a target of attacks. In such a situation, Hungary’s communications and transport infrastructure, along with other critical system components, could be involved or targeted, and the entire territory, airspace and cyberspace of the country could become the theatre of military operations.
In most cases, modern conflicts also have cyber security aspects. Operations conducted in cyberspace may serve to prepare, accompany or replace kinetic operations, but can also be used for independent purposes. They may be directed at disrupting government IT systems, e-government, utilities, strategic enterprises, the transport sector and other critical systems elements of sectors vital to the functioning of the economy, digital networks of organisations essential to the functioning of society, or at manipulating, acquiring or rendering inaccessible the data and information stored on them. The potential of cyber-attacks to cause material damage and disrupt public order does not fall short of conventional weapons. Given that cyberspace is relatively easily accessible, the desired effects may be triggered more rapidly than in any other operational domain, while the identity of perpetrators can remain well concealed.
2. THREATS AND CHALLENGES REQUIRING THE INVOLVEMENT OF THE HUNGARIAN DEFENCE FORCES
The security threats, challenges and risks facing Hungary are detailed in Hungary's National Security Strategy. In most cases, addressing these requires cross-governmental cooperation, with a number of them requiring the leading role or supporting cooperation of the Hungarian Defence Forces.
The Hungarian Defence Forces may be deployed to counter threats posed by state or non-state actors alike. The probability of an unexpected armed attack against Hungary by a state is low, but the consequences for the country as a whole could be extremely serious if it were to occur. For this reason, the Hungarian Defence Forces must always be capable of deterring armed attacks (even on its own until the arrival of Allied support) or, in case such an attack actually occurs, of ensuring the military defence of the country's independence, territorial integrity, borders, citizens and material assets. The possibility of an unexpected armed attack on one or more member states of NATO or the European Union cannot be excluded, therefore Hungary and the Hungarian Defence Forces – in the spirit of the pledged solidarity– must be ready to perform allied or European Union tasks related to the averting of such attacks, both abroad and at home (in the framework of host nation support).
State actors may employ the tools of non-conventional warfare, and the targeted use of non-military assets could have repercussions similar to that of an armed attack. Responding accordingly is oftentimes hindered by the difficulties of identifying perpetrators (attribution), and / or its potential political consequences. Opponent state actors may seek to paralyse or disrupt the operation of the command and control system of the Hungarian Defence Forces through the use of information technology. Hungary considers cyber capabilities endangering physical security or capable of causing substantial material damage to be weapons, and their use to constitute even an act of armed attack, which may eventually invoke a military response.
The likelihood of Hungary and/or its neighbouring countries being a target of an attack using weapons of mass destruction is low, but its implications would be unforeseeable. In such a case, the employment of the Hungarian Defence Forces’ defence capabilities is inevitable. Defending Hungary against possible attacks by conventional, nuclear or dual-use missile systems would be realised within the framework of the Alliance, with the active contribution of Hungary.
In the 21st century, challenges posed by non-state actors are becoming more and more persistent, and the Hungarian Defence Forces contributes to their mitigation primarily at their point of origin, by participating in crisis management operations. The spread of radical ideologies and terrorism within Europe and on its periphery poses a major threat. This may lead to the launching of conventional and non-conventional attacks even against Hungary, or the targeting of Hungarian citizens, interests, military operations and missions abroad. This includes attacks and acts of terrorism caused by disruptive technologies falling into unauthorised hands and thereby endangering national security.
Currently and in the foreseeable future, the most probable threat is a mass increase of illegal migration overburdening government systems and law enforcement agencies, mainly from the Western Balkans route, but also from other directions affecting Hungary. This kind of “modern exodus” has serious consequences for the security and stability of Europe, including Hungary, while simultaneously posing national security, public order, humanitarian and public health risks. During a migration crisis, the Hungarian Defence Forces acts in support of the law enforcement forces. The Hungarian Defence Forces participates in the mitigation of the root causes of illegal mass migration (weak/failed states, ethnic and religious conflicts, extremist ideologies, climate change, the uncontrolled proliferation of weapons, the unilateral intervention of external actors) as part of the state’s broader security and defence policy toolkit, within an international coalition.
The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated that in our globalised world an epidemic can spread rapidly and virtually unstoppably, and that in addition to the health crisis its impact on other elements of security is profound. it also showed that this not only causes a health crisis, but fundamentally affects other aspects of security too. The pandemic has highlighted that the emergence and spread of a disease carrying the risk of severe and mass morbidity among the population in Hungary may trigger a serious crisis, in which the Hungarian Defence Forces – thanks to their organisation, capabilities and extensive logistical infrastructure – play an indispensable role. In addition to the primary effects of the epidemic, we must also be prepared for its secondary effects on the world economy, which could set back the economic performance of individual countries for years, cause severe social tensions and increase existing instabilities, which could widen the range of unstable regions, increase the likelihood of known security risks (e.g. migration) and create new challenges.
We must be prepared to handle natural disasters, including those linked to climate change, which are becoming ever more likely, along with less probable industrial accidents and disasters of regional significance occurring in Hungary or its neighbouring countries. The mitigation of such events will require the active contribution of the Hungarian Defence Forces in line with its core tasks.
3. OUR DEFENCE CHARACTERISTICS
The current state of the Hungarian Defence Forces is fundamentally shaped by the fact that less attention and fewer resources were allocated to the cause of national defence in the atmosphere and under the economic conditions following the Cold War and the political changes in Central and Eastern Europe. When the lifecycles of major – primarily Soviet-made – weapons systems expired, they could only be replaced in certain areas, whereas entire arms of service and the related know-how disappeared almost completely. In parallel, former defence industry capacities were also substantially cut back, and the defence mobilisation capacity of the national economy basically ceased to exist.
The radical changes in the security environment of the 2010s caused a significant shift in opinion regarding national defence in general, and the role of the Hungarian Defence Forces in particular. The Zrínyi Programme launched by the Government in 2016 aimed to create comprehensive national defence capabilities encompassing the whole of society, the economy and governmental organisations. Its most visible outcome is the ongoing development of defence systems and military infrastructure. n parallel, the acceleration of pan-governmental decision-making, the development of elements of national resilience and the promotion of citizens' security awareness, as reflected in their individual, small community and societal engagement in defence, have begun.
The extensive modernisation of the Hungarian Defence Forces contributes to the reinvigoration of the national defence industry, the creation of jobs, the development of small and medium-sized enterprises in Hungary through supply chains, the increase of foreign investment, as well the emergence and strengthening of cutting-edge technology and training, education and technological systems in Hungary. The establishment of domestic supply capacities (production, research & development) will boost employment and ease our dependence on external suppliers.
The successful operation of modern armed forces requires the development of a committed and competent workforce with high quality training, education and continuous training, based on targeted knowledge elements, and with adequate physical fitness and mental resilience. In Hungary, too, the demographic challenges faced by developed societies - ageing, emigration, changes in the working capacity and physical endurance of the population - are factors that determine the military fitness of the population. The growing demand for human resources in the global and domestic labour market also poses a further challenge to the Hungarian armed forces.
Due to its geographical location, our country is directly affected by the challenges emerging on the southern and eastern periphery of Europe. In the regions that determine Hungary's security, the conflicts of the past decades have not been resolved and could easily and unexpectedly spread to other regions. Therefore, Hungary's security cannot be separated from global and regional processes, the effects of which our country is addressing in a multinational cooperation. At the same time, the stability of the Western Balkans, the Middle East and North Africa, as well as the European Union's Eastern neighbourhood, has become a high priority for Hungary.
Hungary lies at the crossroads of NATO’s “eastern” and “southern” flanks, at the intersection between the northern, eastern and southern European operational theatres. Its central location means it can serve as a staging base, deployment route, hosting, force-integration and build-up and redeployment area and / or pre-deployment zone for Allied military formations.
In addition to the European theatre of operations, Europe, including Hungary, may also become involved in coalition operations and peace operations in the North Atlantic, Middle East and North African theatres of operations, as its territory (or deployed forces) is accessible to potential attackers by means of strike capabilities through assets deployed in these areas.
Threats and challenges arising from this changing security environment necessitate the maintaining of close transatlantic ties, as well as the improvement of the defence capabilities of European states, including those of Hungary. Transatlantic cooperation, in accordance with Article 3 of the Washington Treaty (developing national capabilities), is based on the coordinated development of allied forces and ensures the credibility of the collective defence enshrined in Article 5 of the Treaty through the continued interoperability, readiness and combat readiness of national forces.
The need to develop European defence capabilities is further underscored by the fact that Europe – apart from guaranteeing its own security – must also act as a security provider in neighbouring (crisis) regions in order to prevent or mitigate threats. The strengthening of CSDP could facilitate the management of crises erupting in the peripheries, as well as increase the efficiency of European defence industry synergies.
Hungary’s direct security is indivisible from other security developments unfolding in our region. For this reason, there is a need for close defence cooperation with other countries in the region, primarily within the frameworks of the Visegrad Cooperation (V4), the Central European Defence Cooperation (CEDC), the Multinational Land Force (MLF), the Defence Cooperation Initiative (DECI), or within the framework nations concepts led by Germany and Italy (FNC DEU, FNC ITA). The coordinated (and partly joint) development of military capabilities and abilities for cooperation realised through these multinational formations strengthens the security of both Hungary and our regional allies.
Multinational military formations are key elements of 21st century defence policy thinking, since they create strategic convergence among cooperating Member States. Furthermore, they increase military security through the coordination of effective operations and the joint training of forces. In order to promote regional stability, Hungary hosts several multinational cooperation initiatives, such as the HQ Multinational Division Centre (HQ MND-C) or the Regional Special Operations Component Command (R-SOCC), which provide an opportunity for the Hungarian Defence Forces to play an active and decisive role in the command and control of military operations in the Central European region.
4. NATIONAL DEFENCE OF THE FUTURE
The Hungarian Defence Forces must become a sustainable military force that meets the requirements of the times, that is renewed in its approach, organisational culture and defence technology, that is well organised, that respects and preserves national traditions, that can be deployed effectively independently and within the framework of the Alliance and the European Union, and that strengthens its capabilities with a reserve system. It must have state-of-the-art equipped and trained troops, as well as flexible, adaptable, effectively deployable and sustainable defence capabilities to carry out its domestic and international tasks. The development and maintenance of an adequate and continuously renewing national defence industry is essential for a modern force.
4.1 DETERRENCE AND DEFENCE
The toolbox of deterrence and defence to counter challenges affecting Hungary is most efficient when these threats originate from state actors. As global competition for greater geopolitical influence intensifies, the boundary between tasks related to defence and deterrence in peacetime and during crises becomes ever more blurred.
The basis of the armed defence of the modern state and the security of the nation rests on a well-trained national armed forces, a supportive defence industry capable of sustaining the former, the unity of the nation, along with public support for the leadership. A strong national armed forces able to independently act – one that makes an opponent of comparable size and potential question the attainable objectives and advantages of a possible attack – can itself serve as a deterrent. Were such an attack to nevertheless occur, a national force must be able to defend its territory and the sovereignty of the country by military force. With regard to strategic deterrence and defence, Hungary’s membership in NATO and the European Union is a decisive factor, while the development of independent national capabilities also shores up the defences of NATO and the EU, thereby enhancing the stability and security of the continent. That is why the Hungarian Defence Forces must be able (i) to fulfil obligations arising from Article 3 of the Washington Treaty concerning individual and collective defence capability development; (ii) to ensure participation in collective defence tasks derived from Article 5 of the said Treaty; (iii) to undertake tasks arising from the mutual assistance clause (Article 42.7) and the solidarity clause (Article 222) of the Treaty of the European Union and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union; and finally (iv) to contribute to crisis response operations and partnership obligations within the realm of national defence systems. For the sake of carrying out tasks related to defending the country, host nation support for incoming Allied forces must continuously be ensured.
The importance of proportional contributions to the high-readiness response forces of NATO and the EU has significantly increased due to the radically changed security environment. High-readiness reaction forces actively contribute to improving the security of the Euro-Atlantic region, and possess the necessary tools to prevent and manage an armed conflict. That is why it remains in Hungary’s interest to continue contributing to such formations.
As a result of capability developments, the Hungarian Defences Forces must become a well-equipped, highly mobile rapid-reaction force capable of immediate, swift and effective intervention within both national setup and allied frameworks. Furthermore, the Hungarian Defence Forces has to be able to provide significant contributions to high-intensity joint alliance operations, which serve as the basis for flexible, tailored participation in low-intensity (peace support, crisis management, etc.) operations as well.
National and multinational military exercises demonstrating our military capabilities, together with multinational formations in different constellations, are effective tools of deterrence and defence, so we must strive for such participation.
4.2 NATIONAL COOPERATION ABILITY (DEFENCE ADMINISTRATION)
Defence is a national cause, so resources and coordination of efforts must be developed at all levels and in all organisations of government and public administration. Although the armed defence of the country can only be achieved through the activities of the Hungarian Defence Forces, the nature of the challenges requires the preparation of the entire nation, the development and strengthening of national resilience in the complex system of defence. This also includes the preparation and development of the state and public administration, the economy, social organisations and individuals in peacetime, as the security of the country can only be ensured by the combined existence and cooperation of all these. In order to organise the defence of the country in accordance with these principles, an effective defence management system must be put in place, in the spirit of a pan-governmental approach.
Defence administration, as part of the broader national defence system, needs to prepare state and non-state organisations, actors in the economy, along with citizens to undertake national defence tasks, and ensure the joint, coordinated use of military and non-military capabilities in order to protect our country.
The Government's management of the system of defence in the framework of the pan-governmental coordination is carried out through the Minister responsible for defence, who combines the tasks of preparing the country and society for defence and of managing the Hungarian Defence Forces. Accordingly, the command and control system of the Hungarian Defence Forces is integrated into the system of governmental command and control, thus ensuring the coordinated application of the military and non-military elements of defence.
Today’s rapidly and dynamically changing security challenges, which frequently demand immediate reactions, require us to make decisions on next steps in a timely manner (even within a few hours’ time) to undertake defence tasks arising at either the level of the Alliance or of the state. That is why the defence administration system must be able to effectively organise and coordinate the defence of the country during peacetime, cases of extraordinary legal order, or even in crisis situations. Procedures and conditions for accelerated governmental decision-making need to be established to ensure timely responses, and the corresponding information communication systems must be improved.
The resources of the national economy are a key determinant of defence capability. Responsibility for the preparation of the national economy for defence purposes, along with economic mobilisation, lie with the whole state apparatus. For the sake of operating according to uniform requirements, a centralised system of tasks and organisations must be established on the basis of defence administration to prepare, make and coordinate decisions. Furthermore, the system of defence reserves needs to be improved to ensure that the demands of economic mobilisation are met immediately and securely.
In order to involve citizens in duties related to national defence, a sense of defence awareness must be cultivated at both a societal and individual level, along with a willingness to make sacrifices as necessary. Social responsibility for the cause of national defence needs to be strengthened, as is an active approach to the societal management of dangers, crises and conflict situations. The population, enterprises of all sizes, and institutions should be prepared to undertake defence tasks and activities. Defence education and trainings as well as defence exercise systems and preparation frameworks must be improved. Cooperation with scientific institutions should be deepened so that scientific results can be channelled into military innovation as soon as possible.
4.3. NATIONAL RESILIENCE
In today’s complex, unpredictable security environment, we must be prepared for kinetic and non-kinetic attacks, hybrid threats, or other crisis situations endangering our homeland and its citizens. To this end, national resilience must be improved to withstand strikes, to fend off, mitigate and alleviate their consequences, and to maintain the functioning of critical capabilities. The enhancement of the Hungarian national economy’s performance, and the capacities of the national defence industry in parallel, significantly contributes to the strengthening of security and national resilience.
Establishing a high level of resilience decreases the risk of a potential attack, thereby contributing to our deterrence capabilities. In addition, it strengthens the ability to defend the country, and can be used to improve society’s capacity to avert dangers, threats and attacks, to manage their consequences, and to rapidly restore functionality through the synchronisation of military, law enforcement and civilian activities. Consequently, the Hungarian Defence Forces must be able (i) to take action against conventional and hybrid threats; (ii) to increase national resilience through military capabilities; (iii) to guard and defend critical infrastructure and facilities crucial for national defence; as well as (iv) to support the activities of civilian and law enforcement agencies and cooperate with them.
There is an increased need for the efficient functioning of military intelligence and counter-intelligence agencies in order to acquire information regarding military operations, to forecast crises affecting the security of Hungary, to uncover covert efforts threatening Hungarian defence interests, or to ensure the security of soldiers serving in crisis zones. When carrying out tasks related to national security in support of defence, a focus should also be devoted in the future to the targeted development of strategic cooperation with domestic partner services, as well as the intelligence and counter-intelligence organisations of NATO and EU Member States, with primary regard to contemporary challenges.
The success of activities undertaken by the Hungarian Defence Forces and Allied forces operating in Hungarian territory depends to a great degree on support by civilian (non-military) capabilities. In addition, military support for the civilian sector may prove necessary in many crisis situations as well. Both the Hungarian Defence Forces and the civilian actors of society must be prepared to carry out such mutual assistance tasks already during peacetime, predominantly within the framework of civil preparedness, which in turn is a vital tool for achieving a high level of national resilience.
The tasks of civil preparedness fall under the remit of the country’s defence system. Its purpose is to guarantee the continuity of services provided by the government (public administration) and critical system elements, as well as to ensure civilian resources to support the Hungarian Defence Forces and NATO armed forces. Coordination of civilian preparedness tasks between the civilian and military sectors takes place within the system of defence administration, and aims to strengthen and develop national resilience. Thus, it must be improved in a direction and manner so as to facilitate the successful execution of any tasks arising from these requirements.
4.4 INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION CAPACITY
In view of Hungary's close integration into the European and Euro-Atlantic security architecture, the development of the capabilities of the Hungarian Defence Forces should pay special attention to maintaining and enhancing the ability and readiness to cooperate with allied and EU forces. This is an important prerequisite for the defence of Hungary and Europe within the alliance framework, as well as for the effectiveness of participation in operations, missions and other tasks building up national defence capabilities and management for the stability of the surrounding areas, and thus also for the success of deterrence and defence and resilience.
The maintaining of capabilities offered to NATO and the European Union, together with the long-term provision of contributions to international military operations, is a priority for the Hungarian Defence Forces. In planning international contributions, the existing or planned capabilities and the rearmament of military units must be taken into account, along with the respective timeline for force development.
In light of the presumably long-term threats caused by illegal mass migration to Europe and Hungary, we can expect the prolongation and possible transformation of Hungarian operational presence in regions identified as the source of this problem. In addition to the NATO and EU frameworks, the possibility of operational participation in these regions under the aegis of the UN, the OSCE and ad-hoc coalitions should be examined. We must prepare for a more visible presence in observer, mentoring and advisory military and civilian missions, which play an increasingly prominent role in international crisis management efforts. These tasks can only be planned and carried out within the context of pan-governmental cooperation, with the active participation of several Ministries.
The personnel, institutional, procedural and standardisation conditions of multinational cooperation must be improved to ensure the widest possible spectrum of defence capabilities, to be able to respond to threats in an appropriate and timely manner, and to enhance the ability to actively shape our security environment. Such measures facilitate strategic cooperation with our Allies, the joint development and deployment of the armed forces in collective defence tasks, in crisis management operations abroad, and in tasks supporting the capability building of our partners.
The first level of establishing interoperability is the coordinated development of military capabilities in bilateral and multilateral formations with other NATO and EU Member States. The second level is composed of joint trainings and exercises with our Allies and EU partners, carried out in both the physical and virtual space. Finally, the highest level of interoperability can be achieved through participation in multinational regional formations and readiness forces, so we must strive to regularly take part in such initiatives. In addition to the above, the Hungarian Defence Forces should act not only as a contributor to military cooperation, but rather emerge in the coming decade as a driver of cooperation and a decisive regional player.
In order to establish cooperation abilities, Hungary will maintain the consistency between national and NATO defence planning processes, prioritising the qualitative, quantitative and timely fulfilment of capability targets. Hungary has a vested interest in the strengthening of EU defence capabilities in line with the Alliance. With regard to the development of the CSDP military toolbox, we will primarily concentrate on meeting our Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) obligations, and in participating in PESCO projects linked to plans for national force development.
4.5 FOCUS ON THE PEOPLE
The most important assets of the Hungarian Defence Forces are the soldiers and civilians serving the cause of national defence. The future of the Hungarian armed forces rests on the implementation of a progressive human strategy adapted to contemporary challenges and societal changes. This serves as the basis for a dedicated personnel policy encompassing the entire course of military service, including active military service, reserve service and the final phase of a professional career. Another strategic objective is the establishment and improvement of conditions for aftercare and dignified care in old age.
Among the further aims is (i) to develop and increase the efficiency of recruitment tailored to generational and contemporary challenges; (ii) to increase institutional retention by flexibly adapting to labour market effects; and (iii) to innovate career models, promotion systems and salary and benefit schemes.
The Hungarian Defence Forces will continue to actively support youth policy, family policy and equal opportunity initiatives (through its commitment to implementing UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security). It will participate in efforts to shape societal awareness, to direct society’s attention to general well-being and promote a healthy lifestyle.
Programmes to develop physical and mental health, for family and social care, and to support the labour market reintegration and reconversion efforts of military professionals are vital to retaining personnel and upholding their motivation levels.
The recruitment of personnel to the Hungarian Defence Forces is a responsibility of the entire society, which also depends on the outcome of patriotic and defence-related education. Basic knowledge concerning citizens’ obligations as enshrined in the Fundamental Law (encompassing public education, vocational training and institutions of higher education) is widely disseminated as part of patriotic and defence-related education, in accordance with the human resources objectives of the armed forces. To ensure comprehensive societal embedment, the Hungarian Defence Forces is continuously present at state, national, military or other public events, thereby promoting the acceptance, and increasing the prestige, of the military profession itself.
Reaching, recruiting, retaining and replacing qualified and committed personnel necessary for effectively undertaking the tasks of the renewed Hungarian Defence Forces and for the operation of modern weapons systems is another priority. One of the preconditions for the development of defence capabilities adaptable to an ever-changing security and economic environment, and to societal demands and expectations, is the employment of an adequate number of professionally trained soldiers and civilian employees. However, demographic trends in Hungary, the transformation of employment conditions, generational changes in societal values and the increasing human resource demand of economic actors pose serious challenges, which directly affect the armed forces. Strategic cooperation with actors in the defence industry may mitigate certain challenges of specialised human resource management.
Further objectives include ensuring predictable, competitive, stable long-term professional careers, the improvement of working conditions and organisational culture, along with strengthening a sense of professional duty. A military career model provides transparency and defines the competencies necessary for promotion; this is backed by a system of vocational training, research & development, innovation, science and culture in support of life-long learning. Civilian employees serving in organisations of the Hungarian Defence Forces significantly contribute to maintaining soldiers’ capability to react flexibly and the successful execution of their tasks. Holding their efforts in high esteem is an important strategic aim as a means to preserve the existing synergies among the personnel in the future too.
5. THE RENEWING HUNGARIAN DEFENCE FORCES
The Hungarian Defence Forces is the primary pillar of ensuring the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our homeland. Accordingly, the armed forces is capable of performing tasks specified in the Fundamental Law and in its derived laws to meet the standards of the age. It is able to guarantee the security and sovereignty of Hungary through credible deterrence based on national capabilities on the one hand, and within the framework of the Alliance on the other.
The future Hungarian armed forces is an organisation with state-of-the-art equipment, a high degree of mobility, and rapid reaction capability, one that is capable of constantly developing, adapting itself, and being renewed at the same time. In addition to being authentic, open, well-informed, agile and – last, but not least – resilient, it can carry out its tasks either on its own, or in Alliance frameworks.
The defence of Hungary and its citizens is only possible through the effective and integrated use of available resources and assets. The capabilities of the well-prepared and equipped Hungarian Defence Forces, consisting of professional and contract soldiers, civilians supporting soldiers’ activities, along with reservists, are built up modularly. Therefore, these formations are created so as to be able to fully cooperate with each other and with Allied forces. The Hungarian Defence Forces is led by integrated commands, which are able to closely work with other national and international governmental and non-governmental organisations through the harmonisation of command principles, organisations, procedures, and command and control systems. The national elements of our defence are complemented by military capabilities accessible through collective defence and other types of security cooperation.
The most important component of defending our homeland is a security-conscious society, prepared for its tasks to the necessary degree. This means that the establishment of wide-spread, structured networks and cooperation systems exercised already during peacetime is of vital importance, as is the addressing and involvement of citizens themselves.
Through the comprehensive development of defence capabilities, a renewed Hungarian Defence Forces will be established, one that is prepared to carry out its tasks both individually and in Allied framework. The development of national resilience capacity tailored to NATO’s Crisis Response System maintains citizens’ sense of security, together with the preparedness of elements participating in crisis-time activities, at a high level.
The development of the Hungarian Defence Forces is based on the skills and abilities to carry out tasks stipulated by the law and by international commitments. The objective of capability development is to create competencies that meet present and future challenges, can be flexibly adapted to rapidly changing circumstances, and can respond accordingly – building on past experiences and with an eye on the future.
The changing societal, economic and operational environment, together with ever faster technological developments, call for an ongoing transformation of the Hungarian Defence Forces. This affects the improvement of operational procedures, organisational modernisation, the integration of new capabilities, the elaboration of concepts and doctrines related to the above, as well as the increasing of training and preparation efficiency.
The successful execution of tasks requires integrated capabilities (arms and branches) able to gain and maintain operational superiority against an opponent of comparable size to the Hungarian Defence Forces, through the harmonised and integrated use of kinetic and non-kinetic effects.
Warfare of today and of the future transcends the boundaries of conventional armed conflict. With the expansion of operational domains, beside the classic land and air force, the electromagnetic, cyber and outer space become ever more important in achieving and maintaining operational dominance, both during times of deterrence and in cases of crisis and armed confrontation. This necessitates the coordinated development of tools and capabilities deployable to new operational domains, such as the electromagnetic, cyber and outer space, in parallel with that of the classic arms services and branches.
As a result of the procedural and technological edge acquired through force development, the Hungarian armed forces of the 21st century is able to carry out conventional symmetric and/or asymmetric warfare, regardless of whether this is against regular or irregular forces, or an opponent superior in certain capabilities. Its units and sub-units are able to successfully execute their tasks even with less personnel or in restrictive conditions.
5.1 THE HUNGARIAN DEFENCES FORCES
The foundations of the Hungarian Defence Forces are the well-trained and prepared soldiers and the civilians supporting their work, who are able to carry out both national and international tasks, using up-to-date knowledge and equipment. This can only be achieved through a constructive, modern human resource management system that facilitates the continuous availability of motivated, professionally trained and committed personnel, while also taking into account the changing demand in strength numbers set forth due to force development. Another objective of personnel management is to adjust and maintain the proper ratio of personnel, while also fulfilling the quota set by the Parliament.
The command and control system structured into a multi-layered integrated information network, supported by state-of-the-art information communication and advanced cybersecurity capabilities, ensures the ability of the Hungarian Defence Forces to conduct operations, even in restrictive conditions.
Regarding Land Forces, combat, combat support and combat service support capabilities will be gradually developed, in accordance with the availability of incoming resources. To this end, a three-brigade structure will be established, with the aim of creating a heavy, a medium and a special purpose (light) brigade. As for combat support capabilities, primarily qualitative improvements are taking place in the areas of communication and information systems, engineering, chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear (hereinafter referred to as CBRN) defence and reconnaissance.
The Air Force – integrated into the NATO air command and control system – undertakes air policing and air defence tasks to uphold the sovereignty of the Hungarian and the Allied airspace; it also supports Land Forces’ operations. Three air bases, as well as air defence and airspace control capabilities are being developed to ensure the successful execution of the Air Forces’ tasks.
Cyber operation forces contribute to the efficiency of the Land and Air Forces’ kinetic operations through operations – including offensive ones – carried out in the cyber domain. During peacetime, they actively contribute to national cyber defence activities, and prepare for tasks arising in cases of extraordinary legal order.
The successful execution of the full spectrum of tasks requires the establishment of the appropriate logistics and medical support capabilities as an essential prerequisite. Therefore, a partially deployable medical and logistics capability, organised within a supply network, will be created. It will be able to deploy combat and combat support forces to operational areas, to ensure the movement of forces within and between operational areas, and to fully supply and equip them.
The combined arms structure, complemented by the support of the special operations forces and in cooperation with the voluntary territorial defence forces, will be able to stop any aggressor of comparable size and potential to Hungary, and guarantee the country’s territorial integrity.
The Hungarian Defence Forces will achieve superiority primarily based on its well-trained personnel, through technological development, and this is maintained through continuous transformation. Capability development is carried out across the entire spectrum of capability areas. This is supported by the ongoing analysis and evaluation of changes in the strategic environment, gathering and utilising lessons learned from operations and exercises, defence research, operational and technological innovation, together with concept and doctrine development.
Capability development focuses on the coherent improvement of the combat, combat support and combat service support capabilities of the Hungarian Defence Forces. This enhances soldiers’ preparedness, survivability and operational efficiency through modern technology and innovation. Thus, national defence industry development will focus on technological capabilities shaping the future of warfare, such as information technology and cyber defence; simulated, virtual and augmented reality; artificial intelligence; quantum computing; robot technology; unmanned aerial vehicles (and counter-UAV technologies); non-lethal weapons; energy storage and alternative energy sources; nanotechnology; material technologies; along with biotechnology.
5.1.1 Command and control capabilities
The structure and procedures of a mission command-type command and control system encompassing different phases of peace, crisis and defence will be established. Commanders’ competencies will remain characterised by independence, initiative, responsibility and prudent risk-taking on all levels.
Advanced, network-based, autonomous command and control capabilities will be developed that can be effectively operated even in technologically underdeveloped, non-supportive environments. High-bandwidth jamming-proof, unclassified and secured data connections; the protection of forces’ information communications networks against cyber and electronic warfare; and the readiness for intragovernmental cooperation capabilities must be provided. Complex systems of procedures, technical equipment and organisations should be established to ensure the uninterrupted, timely flow of necessary, quantitative and qualitative information to decision-makers even in emergency and degraded information communication scenarios, where high-bandwidth data communication is not available. Decision support systems based on big data and artificial intelligence, sensor-based data gathering, data storage and transmitting systems need to be improved. A dedicated information communication network comprised of standardised, stationary and deployable elements will be established to support operations abroad, including real-time data network connection with our Allies.
As a result of these improvements, the command and control elements, organisations, their supporting systems, along with the applied command procedures will be able to support peace, crisis and warfighting operations without any changes, as well as the seamless, partial or full transition from peacetime activities to crisis and conflict situations. The Hungarian Defence Forces will organise, place and prepare its command structure in such a way as to ensure the command and control of the entire Defence Forces’ operations even in constrained environments, including nuclear, biological or chemical contamination.
5.1.2 Combat and combat support capabilities
During the development of its combat capabilities, the Hungarian Defence Forces will increase the collective and self-defence abilities and combat effectiveness of individual soldiers, sub-units and units, while maintaining the combined arms structure. Within the framework of the Digital Soldier programme, the development of modular, individual equipment will enhance individuals’ physical protection, fire power, lethality as well as mobility, and will also provide network-integrated, high-bandwidth data-based communication. This will provide operational capabilities for night-time operations, including limited visibility and extreme weather conditions, as well as the possibility of integrating unmanned systems at a tactical level.
Tactical level sub-units and units of the Hungarian Defence Forces will be able to successfully carry out their tasks independently and self-sufficiently for a specified period of time. To this end, they will be equipped with high-mobility and high-firepower combat vehicles integrating modern active and passive self-defence systems, anti-armour weapons, support capabilities ensuring autonomous operations, as well as digital data devices capable of long-range communication. In addition to the use of their own fire power, they will be able to integrate the operational effects of the cooperating Air Forces’ manned and unmanned aerial assets, long-range fire support, and to engage in information warfare activities.
The survivability of the troops will be further strengthened. This will primarily be achieved through the improvement of their camouflage and mobility, and the further development of active and passive defence systems. Furthermore, tasks will be automated, especially those with a higher risk of personnel loss. To maintain and increase the survivability and operational freedom of manoeuvre of the Hungarian Defence Forces’ troops, individual and collective CBRN capabilities, movement support and denial combat engineering capabilities, as well as construction and fortification support engineering capabilities will be improved.
The capabilities of the Hungarian Defence Forces are structured in a modular system, so that task forces can be created and tailored to the mission by the commander’s decision. To enhance operational effects, the focus of improvements will be placed on developing of sensors and targeting systems, as well as stand-off weapon systems. Passive and active cyber defence capabilities will be established at all operational levels.
To guarantee the execution of the tasks of Hungarian Defence Forces, it will possess an ISR system that (i) is adaptable to the dynamically changing operational conditions; (ii) can provide adequate foresight and early warning; and (iii) has high mobility and survivability. It will deliver timely information needed for successful operations through a network-based, integrated information collection, processing and communication system. In the area of intelligence/reconnaissance, it will strive to make the most of the opportunities offered by technological development. Data processing and analysis/evaluation capabilities supported by manned and unmanned, land and air platform-based data collection sensors and artificial intelligence must be developed to support operations with real-time updates across all operational domains.
As a result of the development, the Hungarian Defence Forces will possess a tactical, operational and strategic-level unmanned aerial platform fleet that is able to carry out reconnaissance, electronic warfare missions and single or massed kinetic strikes.
Special operations forces will be further developed to successfully and effectively execute national, regional and Allied tasks. The special operations units will provide strategic and operational level rapid reaction capabilities; they will also fulfil airmobile, long-range reconnaissance and special operations requirements. The regional defence cooperation will be further enhanced by the establishment and development of Hungarian-led special operations command and control elements. They will be interoperable with similar Allied commands and forces in technical, procedural and information security terms.
The Air Force the Hungarian Defence Forces carries out the country’s airspace control, air policing and air defence tasks as an integral part of NATO’s Integrated Air and Missile Defence System (NATINAMDS). It possesses all necessary capabilities to effectively perform tasks in times of peace, crisis or conflict within Alliance frameworks. The Air Force operates as an integrated system, with the support of the information and data communication systems belonging to its centralised command structure and decentralised executive units.
As a result of the development of the Air Force, the air defence, strike, air refuelling, reconnaissance and electronic warfare capabilities of the air assets are enhanced, together with their deployability and air-to-ground support capability. Tactical data link and self-defence systems will be further improved. The air assets of the Hungarian Defence Forces will be equipped with electronic countermeasure devices. Priorities include the development of fixed-wing and rotary-wing air transport capabilities to deploy land and special forces and support their operational engagement, as well as the provision of search and rescue and aeromedical evacuation capabilities.
Air defence capabilities will ensure the defence of Hungarian and other designated airspaces against conventional aircrafts of various sizes, functions and capabilities, including those used in unconventional or mass-deployed ways. The Air Force will also be able to effectively employ weapons that can be launched from outside the range of the adversary's air defence assets. The capability to employ strategic, operational and mass-deployable unmanned aerial vehicles of various sizes and capabilities will be developed.
Military cyber space operational capabilities are being established and will be continuously improved to identify and effectively manage military threats and dangers originating from cyberspace, providing relevant responses and countermeasures. These capabilities support all land, air and special kinetic operations, while also actively contributing to the overall cyber security of Hungary.
The defence-oriented development of outer space will be launched to ensure state-of-the-art defence capabilities. The protection of command and communication, surveillance/intelligence, targeting and dedicated, defence-earmarked navigation systems will be ensured. The conditions for defending Hungary against space-based systems must also be established.
Conditions for undertaking modern information operations will be created. The effectiveness of civilian-military cooperation, as well as that of psychological operations will be increased. In order to further enhance military surveillance and intelligence activities, the skills and capabilities related to the electromagnetic spectrum and cyberspace operations will be created. Moreover, strategic communications must be developed, along with the principles and procedures for information and psychological operations.
The Hungarian Defence Forces will be able to carry out electromagnetic operations across the electromagnetic spectrum. To this end, both Land and Air Force will establish electronic warfare capabilities across the entire spectrum, in fields related to electronic attacks, electronic surveillance or electronic defence.
5.1.3 Combat service support capabilities
The combat service support system is able to provide full logistical and medical support for the tactical and operational tasks of the Land Force units and Air Force assets of the Hungarian Defence Forces, both within and outside the borders of Hungary, and in Allied or other international operations. The support system must also become able to store and maintain the weapon systems and material received during the modernisation of the armed forces to meet contemporary standards.
The flexibility and adaptability of combat services support will be ensured by the continuous renewal of support principles and procedures, and through the technological improvement of the logistical and medical system. The decisive properties of logistical support will include (i) the wide-scale application of predictive supply systems, reduced development and fielding cycles, and dual-use equipment; (ii) a system of protected and prepared supply and resupply points; as well as (iii) the maintenance and use of autonomous systems for combat service support purposes.
As part of peacetime battlefield preparation, a system of well-stocked, territorially dispersed, sufficiently redundant storage and repair facilities will be established.
Inter and intra-theatre air transport capabilities will be further developed, ensuring the transport and resupply demands of the Hungarian Defence Forces, including rapid (re)deployment as well as the extraction of forces across the entire spectrum of operational tasks.
The main objective of the improvements in the military medical system is to enhance the health care system of the Hungarian Defence Forces during both peace and crisis times, and to provide state-of-the-art, effective and flexible medical support. The development and modernisation of the deployable medical care capabilities supporting operational tasks, along with land and aeromedical evacuation capabilities, are of particular importance.
A complex multi-stage, stationary, medical command control and support system, integrated into the operational information system must be established, enabling the effective execution of strategic and operational medical care tasks with rapid and adequate measures. This system must be capable of effectively operating even in environments with nuclear, biological or chemical contamination.
5.1.4 Adaptation and transformation capabilities
In order to effectively adapt to changes in the operational environment, the research and development, innovation and transformation ecosystem of the Hungarian Defence Forces will be further improved. For this purpose, the research and development, innovation, concept and doctrine development, as well as the education and training system of the Hungarian Defence Forces will be integrated into a single framework.
Organisations closely cooperating in developing technologies, operational procedures and concepts will be established in such a way as to ensure that the roll-out period of new concepts, procedures and modern technologies is reduced. The rapid adoption of lessons learned and results increases the efficiency of the Hungarian Defence Forces, simplifies the operation of different systems, and ensures that training and education are tailored to the changing operational environment to the highest degree possible. In order to facilitate the training of forces, the Hungarian Defence Forces will possess state-of-the-art virtual and real-time individual simulation systems and other training equipment, also available outside permanent training bases. For the sake of interoperability and Allied cooperation, the necessary conditions for international cooperation will be ensured. To achieve this level of quality, the national and international connectivity of virtual and real-time simulation devices, weapon system simulators, and systems supporting real-time operations, installed at different locations, will be necessary. Thanks to the development of capabilities, a harmonised, joint and combined centre (hub) for real-time modelling and simulating operations will be established, to improve not only Hungarian, but also joint defence capabilities.
5.1.5 National defence augmentation and rear area operations capabilities
In order to build a modern reserve force that can meet the security challenges and risks of our age and support the tasks of regular forces both in peacetime and in instances of extraordinary legal order, the Hungarian Defence Forces gradually increases the numbers and capabilities of the reserve forces, and prepares them for undertaking their basic tasks. The results of the past period realized in the framework of the Zrínyi Programme provide a sound basis for ensuring that – by 2030 – the voluntary reserve system will constitute a unified, coherent system with professional and contract personnel in the execution of their tasks, including adequate responses to new challenges.
Within the framework of establishing rear area defence capabilities, the protection of critical system elements, force augmentation and supplementation, major lines of communications and supply routes, as well as support for civilian authorities must all be improved. In addition to its contribution to host nation support activities in Allied operations, the rear operations command will be able to provide military security in areas not included in operations in Hungary. In particular, its operations will be focused on (i) the defence of designated critical system elements and maintaining their operational capabilities; (ii) the provision of logistical support to military operations organised on a territorial or centralised basis; (iii) the contribution to the maintenance of public and legal order; (iv) the preparation of those liable for military service and reserve forces; and (v) the carrying out of augmentation and supplementation activities.
6. DEFENCE INDUSTRY
In addition to improving the Hungarian Defence Forces so that it becomes an effective and modernly equipped force, a primary objective of the Zrínyi Programme is also to develop the Hungarian defence industry, and to make Hungary a significant regional centre in this regard. Force development provides opportunities for defence industry cooperation, which in turn facilitates the transformation of defence industry through technology transfer and the creation of production capacities. The building up of the Hungarian defence industry is indispensable for sustaining the success of force development over the long term. Maintaining and improving national defence industry capacities, along with the establishment of an independent defence industry research & development and innovation system are issues of strategic importance. This promotes flexibility, the credibility of defence, and the country’s overall resilience, and also contributes to easing defence economic and technological dependence on external actors within a short period of time.
The implementation of the Zrínyi Programme is facilitated by the related industry development programmes, which is why close cooperation between ministries responsible for national defence and industry development is of utmost importance. To ensure the development of the defence industry, the economic situation of its respective actors must be stable. For this purpose, the Government supports the defence sector through the competent Ministry, by using targeted economic measures and financial incentives (i) to facilitate the domestic manufacturing and maintaining of modern military equipment, and create the necessary manufacturing capacities; (ii) to promote technological changes needed for the functioning and servicing of new equipment; and finally (iii) to provide professionally trained personnel.
The development of the defence industry aims not only to establish sustainable armed forces. Instead, it also contributes to facilitating economic and technological development, strengthens supply security, reduces import dependence, and creates employment opportunities for highly skilled personnel. In the long term, it enables respective companies to enter international markets. The rebuilding of the defence industry will create jobs, offer prestige, and provide a long-term, plannable career path within the country for thousands of Hungarian professionals. Thus, it will directly contribute to the development of education and specialised training, scientific research centres, and the economic-social conditions of rural areas, as well as government efforts supporting the entry of small and medium-sized enterprises in these areas into the international market.
The role of the defence industry within the national economy should be interpreted much more broadly than the mere production of defence equipment. Since it is embedded in the national economy, it serves as an active base for domestic research & development, and is able to manufacture products of high added value for export markets too. This is why defence industry research and innovation are a driving force for raising the technological standards of the national economy, and the results of defence-related research quickly trickle over into public use. This may provide an advantage for domestic enterprises, potentially improving their profitability in the global competition of non-military products in European Community and worldwide markets. Therefore, it is in Hungary’s interest to re-establish the technical, economic, organisational and developmental know-how of the defence industry, and to maintain and further this knowledge. The generation, transfer and public dissemination of this knowledge is a shared responsibility of the defence industry, Hungarian universities and colleges, the Hungarian Defence Forces, along with the competent ministries, and is also in the interest of national defence as a whole.
To improve the defence industry, development objectives based on current research trends and cutting-edge technologies should be continuously analysed and defined in line with our defence policy, for the sake of national defence in a broader sense and the Hungarian Defence Forces in particular. The development objectives for the renewal of the defence industry and related technologies must be elaborated in cooperation with the ministry responsible for industry development. Alliance, EU, other funds and public tenders support the financial implementation of such developments. In the domestic development of own products, we should make use of the supply experiences of the EU, NATO and international market partners, within the framework of mutual cooperation.
Hungary possesses internationally competitive resources yet to be exploited for both industrial capabilities and the scientific-technological base. Defence-related research & development projects should immediately be launched with regard to niche military technological platforms addressing several current and likely future challenges; those already started will be continued.
Bilateral and multilateral cooperation will create synergies that can further advance the development of the defence industry. Hungary acknowledges that the defence industry serves as one of the pillars of guaranteeing European security, and that the participation of the Hungarian defence industry in international cooperation frameworks is vital to our national interest. This explains why Hungary is actively involved in the establishment and strengthening of the European technological and defence industry base, and why it strives to decrease fragmentation between Member States. Such efforts undertaken within both EU and NATO frameworks will be monitored and utilised in order to make the most of opportunities for the Hungarian defence industry. We consider the exploitation of regional cooperation possibilities, and the creation of synergies with our partners, to be of key importance. Hungary seeks to align the developmental directions of the domestic defence industry with the general trends of EU industry policy and activities, and to integrate our defence industry within the international industry environment as deeply and broadly as possible.
7. DEFENCE BUDGET
A decisive precondition for the development of the armed forces is the allocation and effective use of resources for the defence sector, in proportion to the performance of the national economy itself. The availability of resources depends on defence expenditure and the establishment of long-term planning conditions through governmental decisions. These assign an ever-growing budget to the renewal of the armed forces, and, in accordance with the agreed Alliance commitment, guarantee that defence expenditure reaches 2% of the GDP by 2024 at the latest, and is maintained at or above that level in the period afterwards. Modernisation expenditure already exceeds 20% of our total defence budget. As a result of the above, a substantial budget is currently available for the capability development of the Hungarian Defence Forces, and will remain so in the coming years. Since the start of the Zrínyi Programme, and in line with the Government’s consistent practice, further resources may be allocated over and above those stipulated by the respective budgetary law to realise developments, in order to adapt to the ever-changing security environment.
The guidelines set out in the Strategy should be used as a basis for the development of the Ministry of Defence's planning directives, regulations and the directives, doctrines, regulations and plans of the Command of the Hungarian Defence Forces.
The time horizon of the Strategy is essentially longer term, but subject to significant changes in the security environment or in the system of defence management, it should be reviewed as necessary, but at least every four years.
 Common Security and Defence Policy
 With the emergence of disruptive technologies, the market balance of power is shifting, and the advances brought about by technology are changing everyday life.
 Combat forces can be reinforced, and task forces can be created in accordance with, and adapted to the respective military task.
 Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance
 One such example is the first Hungarian-led PESCO project launched in 2019, the Integrated European Joint Training and Simulation Centre (EUROSIM).
 NATO Defence Investment Pledge