Hungary Country Drug Report 2017

Public expenditure

Understanding the costs of drug-related actions is an important aspect of drug policy.

In Hungary, there is no specific budget attached to the National Anti-Drug Strategy, but every year ministries approve an overall budget that takes into account the main goals of the strategy. This budget, however, is estimated by authorities to represent less than 4-6 % of total drug- related expenditure. One study, following a well-defined methodology, estimated total drug-related expenditures for four years (2000, 2003, 2005 and 2007).

In 2007, the total drug-related public expenditure represented 0.04 % of gross domestic product (GDP). The total expenditure, estimated at approximately EUR 39 million, was divided into four main areas: law enforcement (75 %), prevention and research (10 %), treatment (10 %) and harm reduction (4 %).

Long-term trends indicate that, between 2000 and 2007, total drug-related expenditure remained stable as a percentage of GDP (between 0.04 % and 0.05 %).

Law enforcement absorbed at least 66 % of these funds, while expenditure on treatment and harm reduction, taken together, did not exceed 15 % of the total. As a consequence of the 2008 economic recession, both the structure and the proportion of GDP allocated to drug- related initiatives have probably changed; however, recent data are not available.

Public expenditure related to illicit drugs in Hungary

NBBased on estimates Hungary’s labelled and unlabelled public expenditure in 2007.

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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.