Hungary is the only country in Central and Eastern Europe, where all governments have been able to fulfil their mandate, and no interim elections have taken place since the regime change in 1989. This stability has been a feature of the Hungarian political system ever since, and makes the country a predictable and reliable partner for investors.
After 1989, Hungary started its reintegration in the world economy. The country opened up to foreign direct investments, and liberalized its trade regime. Privatization began, which was basically finished by the second half of the ‘90s. Hungary joined the OECD in 1996 and NATO in 1999.
During the past 22 years, conservative and social-liberal governments have been alternating each other. At the elections held in 2002 and 2006, the Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP) and the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ) formed a coalition government. In April, 2008, however, after a health reform initiated by the Free Democrats was refused at a Referendum by a vast majority, the Coalition collapsed and the Socialists formed a minority government.
In March 2009, under increasing critiscism about his economic policies, Ferenc Gyurcsány, the Socialist Party leader and Prime Minister resigned and a caretaker government was formed with Gordon Bajnai as Prime Minister.
At the parliamentary elections in April 2010, the conservative FIDESZ-Hungarian Civic Alliance (FIDESZ MPSZ) won with an overwhelming majority. Fidesz's two-thirds mandate was the first for a single party since Hungary's transition to democracy 20 years ago. Fidesz has identified reforming the system of local governments, the electoral system, the media law, as well as easing the process for ethnic Hungarians in neighbouring countries to obtain dual citizenship as the central elements of the new government's programme.
The election in April 2014 was the first to follow the country's new constitution and electoral rules. For the first time since Hungary’s transition to democracy, the election had a single round and voters elected 199 MPs instead of 386 lawmakers previously. And, for the first time, transborder citizens who live in neighbouring countries also had the right to vote for Hungarian parties.
The current composition of the Parliament: Fidesz-KDNP 130 seats; Socialists: 28 seats; Jobbik (a radical right-wing party) 24 seats; LMP (a green-liberal party) 5 seats, independent: 11 seats. The nationalist Fidesz government, now in its second term, will continue to dominate the political scene. Although the far-right Jobbik party poses a potential threat, Fidesz is in a strong position to win the 2018 election.