The government is launching a special scholarship programme for young diaspora Hungarians looking to pursue higher education in Hungary, Deputy Prime Minister Zsolt Semjén said after a meeting of the Hungarian Diaspora Council. The scheme will be implemented in coordination with Culture and Innovation Minister János Csák.
Meanwhile, he said the government on Wednesday approved the establishment of a so-called Welcome Office aimed at helping those who decide to temporarily or permanently repatriate to Hungary. The office will be responsible for handling matters related to pension payments, the nostrification of higher-education degree certificates and the validation of driver’s licences, Semjén said.
Hungary has close institutional ties with more than a hundred diaspora organisations, he said. The government considers it a strategic task to make diaspora and emigration organisations “a home to all Hungarians”, Semjén said. He highlighted the importance of the Kőrösi Csoma Sándor programme aimed at helping Hungarian diaspora communities preserve their language and national identity, which has so far had around 1,000 participants. Hungarian Houses have been opened in several countries and the government has contributed to the construction and reconstruction of churches in Hungarian communities abroad, Semjén noted.
Meanwhile, he said that so far 43,000 Hungarians abroad have received maternity benefits and 38,000 have applied for the childbirth incentive baby bond. More than 1.15 million ethnic Hungarians have been granted citizenship, Semjén said, adding that some 320,000 ethnic Hungarians had voted in the last general election, 50,000 more than in 2018.