Hungary will host the World Science Forum in November, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó noted at an education conference in the United Nations headquarters in New York. The Budapest forum will give scientists and politicians a chance to discuss the role of science and the economic, social and cultural aspects of new research, Szijjártó said on Tuesday local time.
In his address, Szijjártó said the government’s aim was to ensure that education helps school-leavers to find jobs in a labour market which is being transformed by digital and technological developments.
Referring to German-style vocational training, he said dual education was of key importance, adding that the system whereby students get internships as part of their studies was already present in secondary education in Hungary. People finishing secondary education are encouraged to move towards technical areas and information technology. Their number has doubled in the past few years, he added.
Szijjártó also addressed a panel discussion on handling social inequality and emphasised the importance of sharing burdens equally. The government has introduced the principle that state benefits only apply to people who work, Szijjártó said. The tax and social systems have been amended accordingly, he said, adding that this had had a “whitening” effect on the economy and had led to almost full employment. He said Hungary’s economic achievements had proven the naysayers wrong that fiscal discipline cannot run in parallel with vigorous growth, he said. The government has also made it clear that instead of migration it wants to support families in order to address the challenges in Europe’s labour market, Szijjártó said. Instead of encouraging migration, those in need must be given help to remain in their homelands, he added. The government has offered thousands of scholarships to students from developing countries and it supports persecuted Christian communities around the world, he noted.
At an accompanying event on creativity and target-oriented thinking, Szijjártó talked about the role of the car industry. He said the car industry accounted for 27% of Hungarian exports and 29% of industrial output. Hungary is the 20th largest car industry exporter in the world, he added. During his US visit, Szijjártó met Grand Rabbi Moshe Leib Rabinovich, current Munkacser Rebbe in New York, and held talks with representatives of local Hungarian churches.