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Hungary's new huge birth rate subsidies

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:46 am
by Trumptonium1
Hungary today announced the most extreme natalist policies ever seen by any national government suffering a decline in birth rates and a demographic crisis.

The move was a surprise and no such policies were hinted beforehand, nor were they predicted because Orban already won an election in April last year and doesn't have any need for electioneering, especially with election four years away and his party sitting at just under 60% in opinion polls.

Regardless, Viktor Orban's government today saw "a pressing need" to 'ensure the survival of the Hungarian people and nation' and announced new initiatives to raise the birth rates as soon as possible. Among others, these notably include:

1) A government subsidy of $9030 US dollars towards a seven-seater car for new mothers giving birth to their fourth child (56% of Hungarian GDP per capita, 59% of Hungarian average wage and 143% of Hungarian minimum wage)

2) A lifetime (and backdated) income tax exemption for families with four or more children. This is regardless of income, and includes millionaires et al.

3) Interest-free 10 year loans of 10 million forint (27k GBP, 36k USD) for newly married 21-35 year olds, which will be entirely forgiven if the family has three children.

Obviously (/presumably) 2 will no longer apply once birth rates are at higher levels, as it is impossible to imagine Hungary could operate with a 'lifetime' tax exemption once all middle class and up families have their fourth child.

The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens, and Hungary also plans to make the application process for naturalisation more stringent so that immigrants do not abuse the system.




Other governments have used similar incentives to raise birth rates. It can be argued that UK Child Benefits and US Child Tax Credits are a form of such, however, they are more of a discount for having a child rather than a literal incentive, because it still costs more to raise a child than the government rewards you for having one.

The most notable incentives have come from Japan (where it has worked, but not as far as hoped), Russia (where it has definitely worked) and Poland (where it is recent but signs are it's working).

I won't attempt to explain Japanese tax and spend incentives for having children because Japan is notoriously bureaucratic, but more or less Japan is noteworthy for giving a blank child benefit of 235 dollars per child per month to all parents. The Japanese fertility rate reached a record low of 1.26 in 2005, and today increased to 1.44 (slightly down from 1.45 last year). Japan went from the lowest fertility rate in the world in 2005 to more or less the European average.

Russia has more extensive government help for children, including an entire national holiday to fertility 1 day in September (and Putin is not hiding what he wants adults to do on that day), lotteries for parents and a monthly child benefit. Russia's fertility rates have risen substantially - from the lowest peacetime fertility rate in the world of 1.17 in 1999, the year of Putin's rise to power, to 1.75 as of last year. In comparison the United States is now at 1.8, so Russia has risen a lot. It is now higher than all EU countries bar three.

Poland more recently under a conservative government have introduced large government subsidies of 500 PLN (101 GBP, 130 USD) per month, or just under 10% of the monthly average wage, for each family with two or more children where at least one adult works full-time, per child. So far there are signs it has risen from 1.4 to 1.5, but the policy is only in its third year.

Of course there is no guarantee that these subsidies and tax incentives are resulting in these rises in fertility rates, but given the general trend of comparable countries, it's really hard to not argue there is an outright correlation.

So far Hungary has a fertility rate of 1.4, the joint 3rd lowest in the world.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-hung ... SKCN1PZ0I0

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-47192612

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:49 am
by Western Vale Confederacy
I don’t expect any sane migrant to learn Hungarian anyways, so I guess these natalist policies make sense.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:52 am
by Saiwania
This is to be applauded in my view, but I suspect that it could be even more effective if abortion were to be made illegal and all if not more contraceptives were banished from the country on a temporary basis.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:59 am
by Ifreann
George Soros apparently has five children.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:00 am
by Christ Triumphant
Denmark runs "sexy" advertisements offering subsidized vacations for couples to romantic places (e.g. Paris) for the explicit purpose that they have will be having sex there and hopefully getting pregnant.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:02 am
by Western Vale Confederacy
Christ Triumphant wrote:Denmark runs "sexy" advertisements offering subsidized vacations for couples to romantic places (e.g. Paris) for the explicit purpose that they have will be having sex there and hopefully getting pregnant.


I don’t exactly need a romantic vacation to bonk my theoretical female partner into pregnancy.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:07 am
by Christ Triumphant
Western Vale Confederacy wrote:I don’t exactly need a romantic vacation to bonk my theoretical female partner into pregnancy.


Yeah, I find it a bit ridiculous, too. Apparently they're having some success with it. Surely there must be a better way...

If they don't want to go so far as this Hungarian method, they might try subsidizing childcare services, as one of the major reasons affluent Western couples are having less children is that both parents are often working, and having multiple children puts quite a strain work-life.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:10 am
by Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
What is your opinion, OP?

Trumptonium1 wrote:The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens, and Hungary also plans to make the application process for naturalisation more stringent so that immigrants do not abuse the system.


A clear and open violation of European Union law, which will lead to a fine payed by holding back some of the 4 billion euros Hungary receives every year.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:11 am
by Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
Saiwania wrote:This is to be applauded in my view, but I suspect that it could be even more effective if abortion were to be made illegal and all if not more contraceptives were banished from the country on a temporary basis.

Which would only lead to the rich travelling to other countries to have an abortion or get long-term birth control, while the poor parts of the population have to have unwanted children which they cannot care for.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:12 am
by Western Vale Confederacy
Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States wrote:What is your opinion, OP?

Trumptonium1 wrote:The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens, and Hungary also plans to make the application process for naturalisation more stringent so that immigrants do not abuse the system.


A clear and open violation of European Union law, which will lead to a fine payed by holding back some of the 4 billion euros Hungary receives every year.


That is of course implying that the Visegrad Four still remotely listens to the EU anyways.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:14 am
by The Huskar Social Union
Preferably they should try and make it just more sustainable to have children and work at the same time in the first place but eh.

Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States wrote:
Saiwania wrote:This is to be applauded in my view, but I suspect that it could be even more effective if abortion were to be made illegal and all if not more contraceptives were banished from the country on a temporary basis.

Which would only lead to the rich travelling to other countries to have an abortion or get long-term birth control, while the poor parts of the population have to have unwanted children which they cannot care for.

Or moving to other countries for an abortion and then going back home, ala Ireland recently.

Also banning contraceptives is just fucking stupid.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:17 am
by Valrifell
Western Vale Confederacy wrote:
Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States wrote:What is your opinion, OP?



A clear and open violation of European Union law, which will lead to a fine payed by holding back some of the 4 billion euros Hungary receives every year.


That is of course implying that the Visegrad Four still remotely listens to the EU anyways.


I would ask why they don't just make their own union already so everyone can move on with their lives, but then I remember all that sweet monetary aid.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:21 am
by The New California Republic
Saiwania wrote:This is to be applauded in my view, but I suspect that it could be even more effective if abortion were to be made illegal and all if not more contraceptives were banished from the country on a temporary basis.

Sounds like an excellent way to get a bunch of dumped babies, and the adult populace riddled with an STD or five.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:23 am
by Dumb Ideologies
Seems like a reasonable response to a real population problem. Curious though. Much of the centre-right (or at least the sons of Thatcher and Reagan who enjoy LARPing as conservatives) have been moral panicking for decades about poors having more children than they can afford without the help of daddy state. That's often taken the form of cutting and capping child benefits after a certain amount of children.

I wonder if they'll do a wholesale reversal on this or will try to hold two entirely incompatible viewpoints simultaneously and make contradictory and self-defeating provisions? Haha, joke, they're politicians. We all know it's the latter.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:25 am
by Saiwania
The New California Republic wrote:Sounds like an excellent way to get a bunch of dumped babies, and the adult populace riddled with an STD or five.


Once there are enough, conditions can be returned to normal. I view it as operating like a reverse of China's One Child policy. The state should be micromanaging such matters anyway.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:29 am
by The New California Republic
Saiwania wrote:
The New California Republic wrote:Sounds like an excellent way to get a bunch of dumped babies, and the adult populace riddled with an STD or five.


Once there are enough, conditions can be returned to normal. I view it as operating like a reverse of China's One Child policy. The state should be micromanaging such matters anyway.

It takes very little time for an STD to spread through a community, and very little time for a bunch of unwanted pregnancies to appear. So no, that response is no counter to the problems I mentioned.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:33 am
by Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
Western Vale Confederacy wrote:
Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States wrote:What is your opinion, OP?



A clear and open violation of European Union law, which will lead to a fine payed by holding back some of the 4 billion euros Hungary receives every year.


That is of course implying that the Visegrad Four still remotely listens to the EU anyways.

Yeah... Poland caved by reinstating its supreme court after an ECJ ruling, and they still uphold the vast majority of EU laws. Every time the European Commission moves its hands to the money funnel, Visegrad caves.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:39 am
by El-Amin Caliphate
Trumptonium1 wrote:The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens

Isn't discrimination illegal in the EU? And Hungary?

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:43 am
by LiberNovusAmericae
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:
Trumptonium1 wrote:The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens

Isn't discrimination illegal in the EU? And Hungary?

A state denying services to non-citizens and prioritizing citizens should not be considered discrimination. Though the EU is not bound by sanity.

Either way, I don't think it is for the state to regulate or get involved in birth rates.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:45 am
by El-Amin Caliphate
LiberNovusAmericae wrote:
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:Isn't discrimination illegal in the EU? And Hungary?

A state denying services to non-citizens and prioritizing citizens should not be considered discrimination.

True, you're right.

But still, isn't Hungary still part of the EU? And aren't all citizens of a European country technically citizens of the EU, hence citizens of every EU country?

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:50 am
by Ifreann
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:
LiberNovusAmericae wrote:A state denying services to non-citizens and prioritizing citizens should not be considered discrimination.

True, you're right.

But still, isn't Hungary still part of the EU? And aren't all citizens of a European country technically citizens of the EU, hence citizens of every EU country?

That's not how the EU works, no.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:55 am
by The Huskar Social Union
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:
LiberNovusAmericae wrote:A state denying services to non-citizens and prioritizing citizens should not be considered discrimination.

True, you're right.

But still, isn't Hungary still part of the EU? And aren't all citizens of a European country technically citizens of the EU, hence citizens of every EU country?

No.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:57 am
by The New California Republic
The Huskar Social Union wrote:
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:True, you're right.

But still, isn't Hungary still part of the EU? And aren't all citizens of a European country technically citizens of the EU, hence citizens of every EU country?

No.

Well, yes to the first question, but no to the rest.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:06 am
by Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:
Trumptonium1 wrote:The incentives will not be available for non-Hungarian citizens

Isn't discrimination illegal in the EU? And Hungary?

This kind of discrimination is illegal under EU law, yes. While a citizen of an EU nation is automatically a citizen of the EU, that does not make that citizen a citizen of all other member states. However, the EU demands that welfare given to citizens must be given to all permanent residents from other EU countries, as long as they have lived in that nation for a certain amount of time. So, families which have resided in Hungary for quite some time (longer than two years, I believe) must be given the same incentives as citizens.

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:11 am
by Kowani
Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States wrote:
El-Amin Caliphate wrote:Isn't discrimination illegal in the EU? And Hungary?

This kind of discrimination is illegal under EU law, yes. While a citizen of an EU nation is automatically a citizen of the EU, that does not make that citizen a citizen of all other member states. However, the EU demands that welfare given to citizens must be given to all permanent residents from other EU countries, as long as they have lived in that nation for a certain amount of time. So, families which have resided in Hungary for quite some time (longer than two years, I believe) must be given the same incentives as citizens.

Cue the screeching about muh national sovereignty.