Agriculture is the leading national economic sector of Hajdú-Bihar county. The proportion of employees in this sector and the share of pro ducts produced in this region is above the country average. The contribution of agriculture to the GDP is 6.3%, as opposed to the average value of the country (3.3%). Based on their primary activity, 8% of...the enterprises in the county are classified as agricultural and forestry companies, while this proportion is only 5.3% in the whole country.
Nearly three quarters (71.1%) of the sowing area is occupied by maize and other cereals, mainly wheat. This proportion is slightly more than the country average (69.2%). The proportional area of oil crops - including sunflower – and roughage is nearly the same as the country average. However, there is a significant difference in vegetable production. Due to the higher intensity of vegetable production, the area occupied by vegetables is three times the country average. 19.4% of the crop products, 23.5% of animal products and living animals, 25.8% of the income generated by production factors and 29.8% of net enterprise income of Hungary originates from the North Great Plain region.
The facilitation of creating local markets, e.g. local public food supply, satisfying the needs of food trade with local goods, the necessary awareness raising actions, secondary and higher education of experts, as well as the more specific and targeted utilisation of development resources are agricultural development tasks.
The economic condition of an area is fundamentally determined by the extent of employement, as well as the size and composition of its active population. No sustainable economic growth is possible without the necessary amount of employees with the proper skills.
As regards the proportion of employees, i.e. economically active people is...significanlty lower in Hungary than not only in Western Europe, but also countries which joined the EU recently. One of the reasons for this fact is the low amount of part-time employment and the other is the phenomenon that the number of agricultural employees – who had a significant role – greatly decreased in the county.
The employment level of the population in the county is nearly identical as that of the North Great Plain region and it is lower than the country average. The activity proportion, i.e. the joint proportion of employees and unemployed people in the population between 15–74 years of age is 3 percentages lower than the country average. The proportion of unemployed people greatly varies depending on the small regions of the county. The proportion of registered unemployed people in the population of active age is the lowest in Debrecen and the highest in the Hajdúhadház small region. The unemployment of career-starters is a further problem to deal with.
The composition of employees in the county is different than the country average. When compared in terms of different economic sectors, it can be observed that agriculture, game management, forestry and fishery are more significant than the country average. Of the provider sectors, the proportion of financial activity, real estate matters and economic services is lower, while that of accommodation services and hospitality is higher than the country average.
There are regional differences similar to unemployment in terms of the income size which is the basis of personal income tax per taxpayer.
The income level in the North Great Plain region is lower than the country average mainly in terms of income paid for work, where this difference is 23%, while it is only 5% in the case of social income. Altogether, the income and expenditure data of the North Great Plain region are not favourable.
...5); font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">The most important instrument of social advancement and economic development is the education system. The educational qualification of the population of Hajdú-Bihar county is continuously improving, however the census data of the year 2001 show that the educational qualification of the population of the county did not reach the national average. The educational qualification of the county’s population is higher at the county seat and in other cities and lower in small municipalities. The county’s ratio is strongly influenced by the data of the county seat Debrecen and that of Hajdúszoboszló sub region.
...5); font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">It is a widely accepted practice in the European Union to break down countries into regions according to their stage of development, their cultural and economic characteristics. The basis of this methodology is the EU-conform MOTS system, which distinguishes territorial units on five levels. Besides the MOTS system, Hungary uses another system, too, which is the basis of our public administration, and whose roots go back to the times of King Saint Stephen: the county system. In Hungary, developmental decisions are taken by a county’s general assembly; at the same time, from an economic point of view the characteristics and competitive advantages of a county can be defined more precisely than those of a region.
...5); font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg county shares its borders with three countries: Romania, Ukraine and Slovakia. The county is part of the North Great Plain Region, it is the third largest county of Hungary in terms of its population. The peripheric geographical location of the county gained importance by the EU accession, as the county represents a significant part of the eastern border of the EU.
The role of retaining population in agriculture is stronger and more significant in the long run in the North Great Plain Region compared to other regions. The region has a significant processing industry along with a good basis for producing raw materials, developed food processing capicity and high quality agricultural products typical of the... region. The GDP in agriculture, forestry and game management is somewhat higher than the national average.
Variety is of cardinal importance when establishing the quality of horticultural products and determining the product value. The Hungarian breeding results of apple, quince, apricot, cherry, raspberry, red and black currant are promising.
The regulation system of EU the vegetable and fruit market is based on Retail Cooperatives Producers. With the establishment of national vegetable- and fruit production and retail organizations, the market regulation, production and quality development issues of the sector can be handled and solved. Reaching EU standards in fruit production can only be achieved with up-to-date plantation systems and breed selection. A key issue in development is establishing the required financial resources for investments and updating production. In order to reach these standards, significant state subsidies and good credit conditions are needed. By solving these tasks, the sector is expected to become self-financed without government help.
The pursuit of safer production, improving quality and increasing yields require the establishment of up-to-date irrigation systems. The improvement of family farms, motivating land concentration is necessary for increasing average size of plants. Establishing the above mentioned conditions is important since the vegetable-fruit sector is of great significance in the employment of rurally based population, improving their living conditions and executing rural development programs.
An important ambition of EU regional politics is the reduction of disparities. An important strategical objective of the Commission is to terminate underdevelopment and to ensure the development of the regions based on the principles of solidarity, equity and justice. The commission has dedicated forty percent of its common budget to achieve th...ese goals. The differences in development are significantly influenced by the economic characteristics of the specific region, the quality and quantity of human resources, the accessibility of the region and factors influencing local quality of life.
The new spatial structure has been formed by the processes of the change of regime, the events of nineties and the economic renewal based onforeign capital investments parallel with crisis phenomenon. The economic, political and social consequences of the transformation have significantly transformed spatial structure and increased disparities. New disparities have formed, which strengthened due to the formation of east-west slopes and local crisis zones. The outstanding improvement of the capital resulted in great regional development differences, which can be detected when examining regional distribution of gross domestic product. The Eastern part of the country was most heavily affected by the collapse of heavy industry and agricultural mass production based on the Eastern markets.
It is of key importance for the region to strengthen regional competitiveness, which requires the application of consistent development-politics. Economic development is the most important, which can also draw the possibility of establishing welfare infrastructures. It is important to develop the processing industry, the supply networks and to ease the lack of capital it is also important to involve foreign capital. Developing agriculture plays an important role in transforming the structure of the economy. Since the conditions of the region, its traditions and long-term competitive advantages are favorable, thus can represent a greater ratio in the economy than the EU average. The modernisation of the agricultural sector can be promoted by supporting marketing, quality agricultural development and producer-retail cooperation. It is also highly important to promote development in transportation and informatics infrastructure and human resources.
In the future – based on the strength of the region – it is necessary to achieve such a consistent regional development politics, which by validating the principles of regional politics, serves the interest of utilizing regional development supports most efficiently and prevents the irreversible underdevelopment of the region and promotes fast development.
The most important endeavour of European Union’s regional policy is to moderate disparities. An emphasised strategic objective of member states, based on the principle of solidarity, fairness and justice, is to develop regions and almost forty percent of the common budget is devoted to achieving this objective.
Hungary, as a full EU member
The differences in development among the regions are significantly influenced by the economic characteristics of the specific region, quality and quantity of human resources, accessability of the region and other factors influencing local quality of life beside natural conditions.
The new spatial structure was formed by change of regime, processes of the nineties, primarily the economic renewal based on foreign capital investments and the crisis phenomena in parallel with these. The economic, political and social consequences of the transformation significantly changed spatial structure and increased disparities. New disparities formed which were further aggravated as a consequence due to the formation of the eastern-western slope and local crisis zones. As a result of the outstanding development of the capital, the long term differentiation of regional development differences can also be detected when examining the regional distribution of Hungarian gross domestic product. The collapse of heavy industry and agricultural mass production based on the eastern markets primarily affected the north-east counties in the eastern part of the country.
Strengthening regional competitiveness is of key importance for the region, which requires the application of consistent development policy. The most important is economic development which, if it operates well, also infers the possibility of establishing welfare infrastructures. Drawing in external sources to ease the significant lack of capital is important for the processing industry and the development of supplier networks. Agricultural development also plays an important role in transforming economic structure, since the characteristics of the region, its traditions and long term competitive advantages are favourable, therefore it is going to represent a higher ratio within the economy than the EU average. The modernisation of the agricultural sector can be promoted by supporting market accession, quality agricultural production and stimulating producer-retailer cooperation. The development of transportation and informatics infrastructure as well as human resource development plays a significantly important role in the development of the region.
In conclusion, the implementation of such a consistent regional development policy is required in the future, based on the strengths of the region, that serves the most efficient utilisation of regional development funds through the implementation of regional policy principles and prevents the irreversible decay of the region while promoting rapid development.
We revealed and assessed those macroeconomic data which enabled us to identify the outstanding role of agriculture and within it that of fruit production. Based on this, it can be said that soil is the most important natural resource of Hungary. The appropriate combination of the additional resources required for production, labour and assets c...an provide a comparative advantage for the Northern Great Plain Region.
The Northern Great Plain Region is one of the most underdeveloped regions in Hungary, so its development is a political objective. When analysing the economic sectors in the region, the important role of agriculture is obvious and it is also clear that the industry and the tertiary sector can only have an alternative income generating role in the future also. Therefore, it is important that the regional development funds of Hungary and the European Union are directly or indirectly aimed at improving agricultural development and competitiveness.