Life Expectancy in Budapest Is Significantly Shorter Than in Major European Cities

  • 27 May 2024 10:07 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Life Expectancy in Budapest Is Significantly Shorter Than in Major European Cities
Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony, who heads the list of the Párbeszéd, Democratic Coalition and Socialist parties in the Budapest municipal election, said on Saturday that he will aim to extend residents’ life expectancy by five years during his next term if re-elected.

Karácsony noted that average life expectancy in Budapest is shorter by five years than in major European cities and said this encouraged him that “everything we do — whether it’s about city transport, housing or culture — should serve to make life better in the capital”.

“Let us set politics back on its feet so that it will be about our lives,” he said. “Let Budapest be a prosperous, resilient city; let it be our little republic; let it be our shared home, a city where it’s better to live and where we can live longer, at least by five years.”

The mayor said Hungary had the highest ratio of deaths from preventable causes among European Union member states, which would not change without a fundamental reform of the state health sector, but there was a lot that a municipality could do about the matter.

He said the city would continue its outpatient care programme in which around 14,000 free CT and MRI scans have been conducted in the capital since November 2020.

Karácsony also talked about what he called a “housing crisis” in Budapest and pledged to launch a big municipal housing programme financed from EU funds to create more affordable housing in the city.

On the issue of homelessness, he said the city council’s homelessness strategy was not only about the symptoms, but rather about helping people in need avoid losing their homes, adding that 7.4 billion forints (EUR 19.2m) would be spent on this from EU funding.

The mayor also touched on the issue of air pollution in Budapest, which, he said, was mainly caused by heating and transport.

He pledged to spend 1 billion forints also from EU funds to support households struggling to pay energy bills and 2.5 billion forints from the city’s own funds to set up a building renovation fund, which would be expanded to 10 billion forints later.

He said 100 billion forints would be spent on community transport from EU funds, adding that the aim was not to eliminate car traffic in Budapest but a balance had to be found and the city needed a tolerable level of traffic.


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