Hungary's political system is a multi-party parliamentary republic. The system is based on the constitution formulated in 1949 and modified in 1989, which marked the end of the communist rule.
The state has a unicameral parliament of 386 members, of which 176 are elected from constituencies. The president, currently Pal Schmitt (2010), is the head of state and is elected for a five year term.
The central government is headed by the Prime Minister. The Fidesz-party, elected in 2010, is the first party since the end of the communist era to rule without coalition. Recently, the Prime Minister has proposed that the government will be independent from the EU and the IMF in international negotiations.
Major political parties are:
- Christian Democratic People's Party (KDNP)
- Fidesz-Hungarian Civic Union (Fidesz)
- Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP)
- Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF)
- SZDSZ-Hungarian Liberal Party (SZDSZ)
(Sources: Economist, BBC, eiu.com)
Hungary’s economy is ranked 51st on the 2011 Economic Freedom index, with a score of 66.6. The country stands 22nd among the 43 European countries.
The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is a survey that measures the perceived level of corruption across countries worldwide. Hungary is ranked 50th on the 2010 index, with a score of 4.7 indicating that the country is perceived as moderately corrupt.
Freedom of information
In 2010, the nation ranked 23rd on the Press Freedom Index with a total score of 7.50.
The main newspapers circulated in the country are Magyar Hirlap, Nebszabadsag, Magyar Nemzet, Nepszava, Heti Vilaggazdasag, The Budapest Times and The Budapest Sun.
(Sources: rsf.org, BBC)
Hungary’s judiciary is based on the Constitutional Acts XX (20) of 1949 and LXVI (66) of 1997. The highest judicial authority is the Supreme Court, followed by the Regional Courts of Appeal, the County Courts and the Local Courts.
The only non-adversarial court is the Constitutional Court. Separate from the judicial system, this court protects the constitutional order and ensures the independence of judges. Furthermore it has the power to overrule parliamentary decisions.
The Supreme Court hears appeals of special cases and ensures uniform application of law. The Regional Courts of Appeal deals with judgments that are against the decisions of County Courts and Local Courts. Hungary has five Courts of Appeal: Budapest, Pécs, Szeged, Debrecen and Győr. County Courts hear decisions against Local Courts and serve as Courts of First Instance in special cases. Finally, the Local Courts usually act as Courts of First Instance in commercial, civil and criminal cases.
The National Council of Justice ensures the independence of the judiciary by separating it from the executive. The council is also responsible for the administration of all levels of judiciary and maintains the authority to appoint and dismiss presidents and vice-presidents of Local and County Courts, as well as having the power to nominate judges.
(Sources: Interpol,Unidroit.info, lb.hu)