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Children pose on a sign outside the Duna Arena in Budapest, on July 18, 2017. (CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)

7-point plan

Hoping for a baby boom, Hungarian PM offers lifetime tax break to mothers of 4 or more

February 12, 2019

Hungary’s prime minister, who is vehemently opposed to immigration, has proposed a solution to the nation’s plummeting population — income tax exemption for life for women who have four or more children.

Right-wing nationalist Viktor Orban has also proposed young couples be offered interest-free loans of around $36,000, to be cancelled once they have three children.

The remarks were made as Orban delivered his state of the nation address, drawing applause for his announcement of a seven-point plan to increase the birth rate, that also included state support for the purchase of seven-seat vehicles.

Hungary’s population is currently falling by 32,000 per year, but Orban is opposed to welcoming migrants — particularly Muslims. “Hungarian people think differently,” he said, comparing his thinking to that of “the West.”

“We do not need numbers. We need Hungarian children.”

“Increasing the number of births is very difficult, because we have less and less women of childbearing age,” State Secretary for Families Katalin Novak told the BBC. (That number is set to fall by 20 percent in the next decade.) “So less and less women need to have more and more babies.”

About 600,000 Hungarians have moved to western Europe in the past decade.

Read the full story at the BBC.

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