Debrecen Will be One of the Most Successful Cities in Central Europe

Mayor László Papp can imagine an economic growth of up to 50-60 percent in Debrecen in the next decade.

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Mayor László Papp can imagine an economic growth of up to 50-60 percent in Debrecen in the next decade.

The mayor told local newspaper Magyar Nemzet that the city will be further strengthened in the field of education and culture in the future. The foundations for development were laid between 2014 and 2019, and they will build on that in the coming years. The results achieved are also recognized by the opposition, even if they do not fully support the leadership of the city.

The mayor joined the General Assembly in Debrecen in 1998, and he assisted Lajos Kósa as Deputy Mayor for Economic Development and Urban Strategy between 2010 and 2014. 1998 was the last time when an individual constituency was lost in a municipal election, since then, pro-government candidates have won seats in every constituency. The mayor says this is due to listening to and incorporating people’s opinions and suggestions into urban development policy.

László Papp says that in 2014 he took over one of the best developing cities in the country, but he felt that there was still room for improvement in the field of economic development. Further progress required an even better functioning economy.

In the intervening years, more than EUR 2 billion working capital has arrived in Debrecen, bringing with it more than 6,000 jobs. Not only did BMW commit to the city, but so have other companies, while existing companies expanded their capacity.

The Mayor of Debrecen draws attention to the fact that the New Phoenix Plan was implemented at the county seat between 2014 and 2020, which was integrated into the Debrecen 2030 city strategy. The focus will be on urban development between 2019 and 2024, complemented by the Modern Cities program. The Modern Cities program includes elements that did not previously have EU funding and that fit into the urban strategy.

In the Modern Cities program, the city has received funding for the development of the airport and water park, the construction of an international school, the establishment of the university’s innovation center, the renovation of the Csokonai National Theater, the expansion of the southern industrial area and the closure of the refugee camp. László Papp, emphasized that the international school and the Strand water park have already gained international architectural recognition.

There are two developments currency underway including the theater (2023) and the university’s innovation center (2022).

Due to the epidemic, the city had significant revenue losses in 2020 and a correction of HUF 5,5 billion needed to be done. The city has took an additional HUF 1.4 billion loan to avoid postponing developments.

Future of Debrecen – The government sees the city as a strong development center that has positive effect on the growth of the region

The mayor pointed out that Debrecen is facing a huge opportunity in the coming times. The fate of Debrecen and Hungary has been intertwined over the last ten years, and he is pleased that the government sees the city as a strong development center that can also have a positive impact on the growth of the region.

According to the mayor, if the city manages to implement the urban strategy elements planned for 2030, it could be one of the most successful cities in the Central European region.

His hopes are baked by facts. According to a recent publication in the Financial Times, Debrecen is one of the top ten investment destinations in the world, along with New York, Berlin, Montreal, Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

The full Hungarian interview can be read here.

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