By Linda Young

Budapest, Hungary

Hungary has requested precautionary financial assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Union (EU).

The ongoing eurozone debt crisis has weakened Hungary's currency, the forint.

In the meantime, the total indebtedness of the Hungarian government has risen to 82 percent of its economic output compared to 75 percent at the end of June.

Hungarian authorities have indicated to IMF and European Commission officials that they had only requested help as a precautionary measure in case it was needed in order to have it in place.

The IMF team will return to Washington to discuss Hungary's request.

Hungarian officials last week had said they were formulating a plan to present to the IMF and the EU that was focused on helping Hungary's economy to grow rather than just implementing austerity measures.

One of the impediments to economic growth in Hungary is the payment of home mortgages. Most mortgages are payable in Swiss francs. However, while the forint is weak the franc is strong. That means the currency exchange rate is unfavorable to Hungarians, which makes their mortgage payments cost them more.


World - Hungary Asks for Precautionary Financial Assistance from IMF | Global Viewpoint