Academicians criticise central bank's education giving

A group of prominent economists at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences has criticised the central bank’s educational programmes, saying they promote the views of its leadership at public expense and breach rules governing universities – allegations the bank has rejected, writes Marton Eder for Bloomberg.

The academics’ criticism concerns about HUF200 billion (US$696 million) earmarked by the National Bank of Hungary from its profits for foundations set up to support the teaching of economics. The monetary authority is also helping establish a new university campus in eastern Hungary. The funds’ endowment is roughly on par with the government’s annual spending on all state higher education combined.

The central bank’s initiatives are illegal, go against international norms and circumvent established quality controls for higher education, the Economics Committee of the academy said in a letter published on its website. Members of the panel include Attila Chikan, a former minister under prime minister Viktor Orban’s first government that ruled until 2002, the academy website says. Julia Kiraly, a vice-governor at the central bank until 2013, who has criticised the authority’s current policy, is also a member, along with other former central bankers, the website shows.
Full report on the Bloomberg site