The nation of Hungary and its citizens are steadily making their way as an EU member state, helped by an increasingly strong economy, a beautiful, vibrant capital city in Budapest, and an investor visa program that is the best value in Europe, and as a result, attracting plenty of interest from wealthy investors from China and the Middle East.
Hungary – A Country Making A Comeback
Hungary is one of those small Central European nations that have historically made a subtle yet sizeable impact on the world, and you likely know more about Hungary – and Hungarians – than you realize. What springs to mind when you think of Hungary? Budapest – often named “The Most Beautiful City In Europe”? The fabulous Blue Danube – Europe’s second-longest river after the Volga, so beautiful that Johan Strauss composed a waltz in honor of it? Hollywood legend Zsa Zsa Gabor? Bela Lugosi (the first actor to play Dracula)? Soccer legend Ferenc Puskas and the Marvelous Magyars? Lazlo Papp – first boxer to win three Olympic gold medals? Composer Franz Liszt? Goulash?
However you may think of Hungary, it’s unlikely to be for anything they have achieved in the last 60 years. Like many Central-to-Southern Eastern European nations like the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania, Hungary was absorbed by the former Soviet Union (Russia invaded Hungary in 1956), and their progression as a nation was stifled, leaving them virtually trapped in a 1950s time-capsule while the rest of the free world moved on.
Hungary’s national soccer team can be viewed as a microcosm for the nation in general. In the early 1950s, the Hungarian team revolutionized football with a slick passing, attacking game the likes of which had never previously been seen, and that team is still rated among the greatest ever. Spearheaded by Puskas (pictured above), Hungary thrashed England before 105,000 fans at Wembley 6-3 in the “Match of the Century”. Six months later Hungary won the return 7-1 in Budapest.
After the Russian invasion in 1956, Hungarian soccer began a rapid decline in which they rarely qualified for international tournaments. The Soviet stifling of Hungarian creativity didn’t just affect its soccer, it was the end for the country as a contributor to the world in arts and science. The Hungarian Revolution later that year saw some 200,000 flee the country, many of them the great scientific and industrial minds that would have powered the country forward, and were instead lost to the West.
The Soviet Union collapsed in 1989-90, and Hungary became a republic. It joined NATO in 1999, and became a member of the EU in 2004. Hungary is also a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the World Bank, the Council of Europe and the Visegrád Group.
Hungary is nation of 9.8 million of which more than 20% (2.1 million) live in the capital Budapest, which rivals Czech capital Prague as the most vibrant, cosmopolitan city in Central Europe. According to the OCED (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development), Hungary is “a high-income mixed economy with a very high human development index and a skilled labour force.” Interestingly, Hungary has the world’s 14th most complex economy, and ranks 13th in the world for income equality.
Hungary is an export-based economy with a strong emphasis on foreign trade, and despite its small size, it is the 35th largest export economy in the world, pretty impressive when one realizes there are currently 28 nations in the EU alone. In 2015 alone, Hungary had more than $100 billion in exports, not bad for a country of less than 10 million people. Not surprisingly, a nation as industrious as Hungary is a target for major foreign investment. In 2015 Hungary received almost $120 billion in foreign investment, while making some $50 billion in foreign investments itself. Clearly Hungary is a nation on the rise, and an ideal location for an ambitious foreign investor to relocate and rebuild for the future.
The Hungarian passport has visa free access to 167 countries around the world, ranking it the 10th most powerful passport according to 2ndPassports.com’s 2017 World Passport Rankings. Like most EU passports, Hungary’s has access to all of Europe including the UK, North America, South America, the Caribbean, parts of Africa and Asia, Australasia and Southeast Asia.
The Hungarian passport ranks ahead of several tax-havens and international business hubs like Liechenstein (164 countries), Malaysia (also 164), Monacao (160) and Hong Kong (154). If Hungary continues its rapid economic rise, one would expect its passport to continue to increase in power even further. For example, most of the top 10 passports in the world are countries that feature highly economically. The most powerful passport the world right now is that of Germany, which has visa free access 177 countries. Second place is taken up by Sweden, whose passport has access to 176 countries visa free, and that is followed by Spain France Italy the UK and Finland in joint third place with 175 countries.
As is often reiterated by 2ndPassports.com, the passports of those countries that make up the EU are consistently strong and average in excess of 160 countries visa free. By comparison, most passports for countries in Asia, Africa and Middle East perform far worse, with 50 or less countries on average. Almost as important as an EU passport’s visa-free power is that as an EU citizen, an individual is free to live, work, run a business and prosper, and remain indefinitely in any other European Union country. That means as a Hungarian citizen, you can if you prefer live in a much larger EU nation like Germany, France, Italy or Spain.
The global economy continues to diversify, with previously poor nations tapping into virtually undiscovered sources of wealth, and countries with few natural resources turning themselves into global business hubs creating millionaires and billionaires in countries where there had been little wealth before. Highly intelligent, ambitious, driven individuals will also prosper in seemingly hopeless places, be they war-torn nations or crime-riddled countries. This new generation of high net-worth individuals want to be able to enjoy life to the full, just like their Western counterparts do. For that, they need freedom of movement, something their current citizenship and passport might not guarantee.
However, thanks to citizenship by investment (CBI) and investor visa programs and websites like 2ndPassports.com, a citizen of Iraq, Afghanistan, Eretria or Somalia – owners of four of the worst performing passports on the planet – can gain second citizenship to a respected EU member state like Hungary, and enjoy the freedom of travel and movement that a Hungarian passports brings, not to mention the business opportunities membership of the European Union brings.
How To Become A Hungarian Citizen
In 2013 the Hungarian government announced the Hungarian Investor Residency Bond Program, its own version of a CBI program. The result is arguably the best value program of its kind in Europe, and has rapidly gained popularity, particularly with investors from the Middle-East and China. By mid-2016 more than 3,650 residency programs had been acquired by foreign investors, earning Hungary an estimated €1.1 billion in revenue.
To become a Hungarian resident, an investor must purchase €300,000 worth of Hungarian Government Bonds, and those bonds must be held for a minimum of five years in order to maintain the owner’s Hungarian residency. A Hungarian residency permit allows its owner the right to live and work in any country within the Schengen Zone for 90 days at a time. Upon completion of five years of residency* an investor can then apply for full Hungarian citizenship.
*2ndPassports.com can significantly speed up this section of the Hungarian residency program, cutting the period of residency from five years to one year or less, effectively turning the Hungarian Investor Residency Bond Program into a CBI program. Contact 2ndPassports.com for further details.
2ndPassports.com are the market leaders in the second citizenship industry, and our goal is to find the perfect CBI (Citizenship By Investment) or Investor Visa program for individuals who are looking for a greater freedom of movement. Wealthy individuals from the Middle East, Asia and Africa increasingly find themselves restricted by their nationality and their passport, and the acquisition of second citizenship – ideally to an EU country – and subsequent ownership of a vastly more powerful passport will be a life enhancing occurrence.
For more information on becoming a Hungarian citizen and receiving a Hungarian passport, contact 2ndPassports.com today. If you visit our homepage, you will see our Hungary program, as well as a selection of the best residency and citizenship programs from the EU and Caribbean markets.
We can give you all the information you require on Hungary’s program, and explain how we can speed up the residency and citizenship process, and deliver you your Hungarian passport in a fraction of the usual time.
Feel free to contact us via email, WhatsApp or Telegram. If you prefer you can chat to one of our expert representatives directly – you can call us using our encrypted phone and Skype lines. All of our contact details are listed at the top of the 2ndPassports.com homepage.
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