Hungary faces ire of World Bank

September 4, 1998

THE INTRODUCTION of tuition fees for higher education was one of the less pleasant features of post-communist life in Hungary.

The decision of the new Hungarian government partially to eliminate them this autumn has been welcomed by students and academics alike. But education minister Zoltan Pokorny has had some explaining to do to the World Bank.

His ministry has concluded a 50 billion forint (Pounds 142 million) loan, one condition of which was that "by 2002, universities and higher education colleges would cover 15 to 20 per cent of their costs from external sources", ie tuition fees.

Now the agreement will have to be amended. This will be done formally in October. The education ministry is looking for a new source of income to make up for the lost fees.

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