For most Hungarians, corruption and personal connections are part of their environment and ‘oil the wheels’, making everyday life easier. In the administration of Prime Minister Viktor Orban, corruption is part of the system and most state institutions are ‘captured’. However, perceptions of state corruption are strongly aligned with political affiliation.
- The personal enrichment of government-enhanced corruption is establishing a new elite benefiting from transfers of public money.
- Corruption can clog economic growth but also grease it, judging by Hungary’s performance until the pandemic.
- Hungary’s reputation for corruption will reinforce doubts in Brussels whether EU funds are properly used.