Saturday, March 23, 2013

The industrial park of Pécs

The industrial park of Pécs 

by Márton Kormanik

This post examines the way the industrial park of Pécs was created and whether it was successful or not. It also tries to outline if the industrial park was capable of coping with the recent crisis or not.

The following post is going to be about the industrial park of Pécs. There was a campaign for encouraging the establishment of new industrial parks throughout different regions of the country. That program is called IPPP (Industrial Parks Partnership Programme) and it aimed for an increasing number of industrial parks each year beginning with 1997. The programme was considered highly successful for being enough of a force to create 165 industrial parks around Hungary until 2003. Later on the European Union contributed to this program with 138,309 EUR. 

What was a really good idea of this programme was to focus on poor regions. In 1999 there were 112 industrial parks established, and 66 of these parks were installed within the four poorest regions of Hungary (northern Hungary, the Great North Plain, the Great South Plain and southern Transdanubia). The primary goal of installing these parks in poor regions must had been to decrease regional inequalities within Hungary to an acceptable level. The programme was also supported by Italian partners, who granted training for the directors of the 66 parks established in the poorest regions.

Through this programme the industrial park of Pécs was also established. This industrial park replaced mining facilities that provided workplaces for local people, and it had overcome its predecessor in many ways. First of all mining is a very harmful industry for nature and human health too. By bringing down the mining facilities the pollution of that location dropped sharply. Second, the industrial park not just employed more people than the mines previously, but it also opened a re- and further training facilities that are now vital in supplying companies with highly trained, advance and cheap workforce. This had various results during the years since then.

First of all, the industrial park of Pécs became an agglomerating force. More and more companies settled down in the park, thus raising its importance even further. Although the financial crisis of 2008 sort of broke that trend, for many companies became bankrupt or were just simply forced to streamline their budget, and this resulted in many plots being sold.

But this still does not mean that the industrial park in Pécs is done forever. In fact, the financial crisis might be a positive impact in the end. Investments and expenditures began in the year of 2006 supported by the government that are probably becoming productive soon. Those investments focused on expanding the territory of the park and developing the infrastructure.

The raising amount of disposable land raises the supply of land that already had been boosted by those companies that went bankrupt during the crisis. This means that soon the land prices should start dropping within the industrial park, which could attract other companies or investors. Furthermore, the training facilities still operate there, creating well qualified and cheap workforce, what can also attract companies. And if more companies or investors could be attracted then soon, the industrial park of Pécs could flourish again. All in all in my opinion the industrial park of Pécs can be considered a success. There are 3 main reasons supporting my opinion. The first one is that the park replaced a harmful industry with industries that have less devastating effects on the nature and human health. Second, the park had been considered a success by companies too, because they chose to move there in great numbers. Third, despite the relapse caused by the financial crisis the industrial park still have many opportunities to utilize.


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