Economy of Bács-Kiskun
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The economy of Bács-Kiskun county in southern Hungary accounted for 3.7% of the gross value added (GVA) of Hungary in 2001. With almost EUR 1.9 billion, the GVA in Bács-Kiskun had increased by 50% compared to 1995.
The primary sector accounted for 12.3% of the Gross Value Added of the county in 2001, and this was the highest share of any county. However, this share is declining over the years: it was 15.6% in 1995.
The share of the secondary sector is relatively constant over the years, with 30.9% of the Gross Value Added in 2001 (compared to 29.5% in 1995). The tertiary sector's GVA has increased most, although it still had a low share (56.8%) compared to the country as a whole (64.4%).
Service and trade
80% of the industrial output is represented by the food, machine, wood, and printing industries. The more substantial companies in the region attracted more investment. In the course of privatisation the Kecskemét cannery was purchased by Heinz, the Kiskunhalas textile mill partially by Levi's. During the privatisation, the Danube Knitting Mill in Baja was acquired by an American financial investment group
Among the industrial companies operating in the area of Baja are UNILEVER Rt. producing deep frozen products, the Bread factory of Bácska Sütoipari Rt., the abattoir of DÉLHÚS and the Pannonia Brewery. The local government of Baja are encouraging the expansion of foreign capital by reducing local taxes.
There are approximately 39,600 firms in the county, representing 4.6% of the national total. The majority of companies employ only several people; indeed, 95% have 10 or fewer employees. Two per cent of companies belong in the medium category, employing between 21 and 50 people, while the number and proportion of those employing 300 or more is very small.
Fruit, vegetable, corn and wheat production are the most successful branches of the region's agriculture. Compared to the other Hungarian counties, Bács-Kiskun has the second largest number of pigs (10% of the Hungarian pig stock) and 7% of cattle stock. The stock of sheep made up 194,000 at the end of 2002, 17.6% of Hungary's total stock and the largest in Hungary.
The 100-year history of agricultural research, and the more recent technical, medical, and social research have played an important role in the shaping of Bács-Kiskun's present profile. It was in the sandy soils around Kecskemét that the newly established Vegetable Research Institute conducted its first tests in the 1940s. Its work has since become internationally recognized. The same is true of the work of the Grape Research Institute - 7 000 grape hybrids and almost 100 grape species have been developed there and good results have been achieved in the improvement of species and in the development of virus-resistant varieties. The Kecskemét faculty of the Horticultural University researches into the biological, chemical, technical, and economic aspects of food production and preservation.
The centre of technical research is the College of Automation and Engineering but important work is also being conducted by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences' Institute of Astronomy. Highly complex operations are undertaken in the county's hospitals, especially in the area of internal medicine. The Aviation Medical Research Institute is also based here where, amongst other things, astronauts are prepared and trained. Social-economic research is carried out at the Great Plain Scientific Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre for Regional Research.