The Hungarian Economic Association held its ordinary Annual General Assembly on Friday, 25 May 2018. The Assembly took place in the IBM Budapest Lab Conference Hall by an attendance rate of over 92%, where the delegates of the county organisations and the sections of the Hungarian Economic Association adopted the 2017 report on HEA’s financial management and the annexed public benefit statement, as well as the financial plan of the Association for 2018.

In the first part of the meeting Barnabás Virág, Executive Director for Monetary Policy and Economic Analysis at the National Bank of Hungary, member of the Financial Stability Committee and Board member of HEA’s Competitiveness Section delivered a presentation called Unchanging Goals in a Changing World. To access the slides of the presentation please click here (pdf).

The current Board began its work exactly a year ago, authorised by the delegates to bring fresh momentum while simultaneously maintaining the traditions of the HEA – said Éva Hegedüs, Secretary General of the HEA, adding that the Board considered it feasible by strengthening the HEA’s international relations and developing its youth organisations, among others. According to Éva Hegedüs, 2017 was an eventful year in the history of the Association. In addition to the 80-100 county and section events held traditionally every year, numerous conferences were organised as well of which the Association can justly feel proud. The broad variety of programmes was attributable to the management of the sections and county level organisations.

Listing the events of last year, the Secretary General reminded that the Itinerant Conference of Economists held in Eger had attracted almost 900 participants, 17 sections and 160 speakers, including a Nobel Prize winner in economics for the first time in the history of the HEA. The HEA had an independent section to participate in the IEA World Congress held in Mexico City, and in November they organised a joint international conference on the future of the European Union alongside the European Economic and Social Committee. The HEA launched a new partnership with the economic associations of the V4 countries, resulting in a partnership agreement signed by the four economic associations in Budapest at the end of March. The HEA Community Centre at the Eiffel Palace is increasingly popular among the Association’s sections, with more and more events and roundtable sessions organised there. The youth organisation of the HEA has been developing and expanding too, currently represented at almost every higher education institution of economics.

Speaking of organisational changes, Éva Hegedüs told the delegates that the Public Finance Section had been reorganised at the end of last year led by György Barcza, along with the establishment of some new sections. The European Union Section of the Hungarian Economic Association was founded under the chairmanship of Szabolcs Fazakas, former minister of industry, commerce and tourism and chief advisor to the EU commissioner for financial planning. A similarly important issue is demography: the Demographics Section of the HEA held its inaugural meeting too, where the participants unanimously elected József Benda, researcher of socialisation issues, organization developer, social educator, founder and head of the professional workshop Alliance for Child and Family Friendly Hungary, and senior research fellow at the Educational Research and Development Centre of Eszterházy Károly University to be president of the Section. The Secretary General announced that the organisation of additional sections was also in the preparatory stage.

Presenting the key figures of the Association’s financial management, Éva Hegedüs informed the delegates that both the received donations and funds and the income from membership fees of the HEA increased significantly in 2017. The total income realised in 2017 was 64.2% higher than in the previous year. Donations increased by 19.5% year on year, while the total income from membership fees grew by 8.5%. The individual membership fees in 2017 increased significantly, by 10.6% year on year, although requiring improved payment discipline by members. Overall, the expenses of the HEA grew at a higher rate, primarily due to costs associated with the strengthening and expansion of the Association’s international relations. As a result, the financial performance of the organisation was altogether negative, covered by leftover funds brought forward from 2016. Éva Hegedüs announced that the Hungarian Economic Association continued to comply with the provisions set out by the Civil Organisations Act (Act CLXXV of 2011) concerning public benefit entities. To access the documents of the financial-accounting report and the annexed public benefit statement please click here (zip).

Other items on the Agenda included information on the preparation of the 56th Itinerant Conference of Economists, delivered by the President of the HEA. Gyula Pleschinger announced that the Conference would be hosted by the City of Debrecen and the Kölcsey Centre between 6-8 September, in accordance with the traditional structure.


Presentation delivered by Barnabás Virág (pdf)
Documents of HEA’s 2017 report on financial management (zip)