The budget ensures the resources necessary to maintain the regulated utilities price scheme for households, protect the security of the country, and defend family subsidies and pensions, even during wartime, the finance ministry said on Friday. Hungary’s cash flow-based general government balance reached 3,298.7 billion forints (EUR 8.5bn) at the end of August, the ministry confirmed in a detailed release of data. The deficit widened from 2,940.3 billion forints at the end of July. The central budget deficit reached 3,330.8 billion forints at the end of August and the social security funds were 93.0 billion forints in the red. Separate state funds had a 125.1 billion forints surplus. “In addition to the extraordinary expenditures, the budget continues to pre-finance European Union programmes, the resources for which Brussels is keeping from Hungary for political reasons,” it added. The ministry noted that spending on European Union-funded programmes came to 1,813.8 billion forints in January-August, while transfers from Brussels reached just 1,040.9 billion forints. Expenditures related to the regulated utilities price scheme for households came to 1,085.1 billion forints by the end of August. Expenditures on compensation for suburban and long-distance public transport reached 440.5 billion forints. “In spite of the unfavourable international circumstances, the government remains committed to reducing the deficit and state debt level from year to year,” the ministry said. The full-year deficit target is 3,400.2 billion forints. The deficit reached 4,753.4 billion forints in 2022.