Low economic activity
According to the data of the Central Statistical Office /CSO/ for the year 2004, the
participation rate in North Hungary is 49.3% within the proportion of the economically
active age group between 15-74, which is considerably lagging behind the national rate of
53.8 %. In 2004, out of 477 300 economically active inhabitants 431 100 people worked and
46 200 persons were unemployed. Between 2000-2004, the rate of employment grew only in
Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén County (by 2.1%), while it fell in Heves and Nógrád (in Heves by
0.5%, in Nógrád by 1.2%); in the meantime, the participation rate changed to a similar extent
in the counties. Low activity is related to the economic and industrial decline of the region.
The termination of jobs resulted in unemployment, which was followed by the deactivation
of economically active people and their withdrawal from the world of labour.
There are micro-regions where more than three non-working persons fall on one employed
person (the micro-regions of Abaúj-Hegyköz and Bodrogköz, and Edelény, Encs, Mezőcsát,
Ózd, Szerencs, Szikszó, Tokaj – all located in B.-A.-Z. County). In micro-regions in less
favourable economic conditions less than two unemployed persons fall on one wage-earner –
they are the micro-regions of Tiszaújváros, Eger, Gyöngyös, Hatvan, Balassagyarmat and
In terms of income level, employers in the region, especially in Nógrád County, earn less
than the national average.
High long-term unemployment
In total, the proportion of the long-term unemployed, i.e., persons unemployed for more than
180 days, has decreased since 2000 in all the three counties; their rate, however, is high and
at the end of 2004 exceeded 50% of the total number of unemployed people. This figure
supports statements on shortage of jobs and difficulties in finding a job.
The proportion of the long-term unemployed is the lowest in Heves, and the highest in
Borsod. Looking at micro-regions, the situation is the worst in the micro-regions of
Salgótarján, Mezőcsát, and Edelény, while the lowest value is produced by the microregions
of Rétság, and Eger and Hatvan with better employment conditions.
Within the unemployed the proportion of young people starting out on their careers is
extremely high in the micro-regions of Edelény and Encs, while it is the lowest in the microregions
of Heves and Hatvan. Concerning white collar workers, this proportion is the most
disadvantageous in the micro-region of the county centres in Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén and
Heves Counties, being 19.6% in Miskolc, 26.4% in Eger, and 16.1% in the micro-region of
Balassagyarmat in Nógrád County.