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The government has shown great agility in procuring vaccines, giving the country a head-start on its European peers, according to a government official.

Fully 3% of the Hungarian population has been vaccinated against coronavirus, compared with the European Union’s average 2.7%, the human resources minister has said. Miklós Kásler said he believed that Hungary’s advantage would increase, referring to the government’s “extreme agility” when it came to making vaccine purchases from other countries. In a video posted on Facebook the minister said Hungary’s vaccination programme was “highly organised” and the pace of vaccination was dependent exclusively on the speed the country could obtain the vaccine. Shipments through the EU are “uncertain in terms of time and quantity”, that is why the government is “gathering information on all continents”. All five vaccines licenced for use in Hungary, he added, were reliable “in all sense”. He insisted that Hungarian health authorities would only licence a vaccine if they were effective and the risk of side effects or complications was negligible.