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DEVELOPING THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY:

HOW CITIES HELP NATIONAL PROGRAMS IN THREE EU ACCESSION AND AN ECA COUNTRY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review of Tatabánya Knowledge Economy Foundation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Economic Development Organization of the County Town Tatabánya

June 2002

 

CONTENTS

 

1                                                               INTRODUCTION.. 4

1.1                                                       SHORT HISTORY.. 5

1.2                                                       FAVORABLE LOCATION.. 6

1.3                                                       THE PLACE OF TATABÁNYA IN HUNGARY.. 6

2                                                               LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.. 8

2.1                                                       ECONOMIC SITUATION.. 8

2.2                                                       NEW HOMES IN TATABÁNYA.. 9

2.3                                                       TATABÁNYA IN FLOWER.. 10

2.4                                                       INVESTMENTS.. 11

2.4.1                                                      Tenement flat program.. 11

2.4.2                                                      Public road network. 12

2.4.3                                                      Selective waste collection. 12

2.4.4                                                      Coloplast Ltd. 13

2.4.5                                                      Zenon Ltd. 14

2.5                                                       TOURISM AND CULTURE.. 14

2.5.1                                                      The Népház. 15

2.5.2                                                      The Museum of Tatabánya is expecting the visitors with open doors  15

2.5.3                                                      Cultural events, meetings, fairs. 16

3                                                               EDUCATED AND SKILLED POPULATION.. 17

3.1                                                       SCHOLARSHIP FOR THE COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY STUDENTS OF TATABÁNYA   17

3.2                                                       CIVIL ORGANIZATIONS.. 17

3.3                                                       CO-OPERATIONS.. 18

3.4                                                       EDUCATION.. 20

3.5                                                       EMPLOYMENT. 21

4                                                               ENVIRONMENT CONDUCTIVE TO INNOVATION.. 22

4.1                                                       INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIPS OF TATABÁNYA AND ITS REGION   22

4.2                                                       PROGRAMS, CONFERENCES.. 23

5                                                               SUMMARY.. 24

 


1           INTRODUCTION

 

The report below is the first written station of the program “Developing the Knowledge Economy: How Cities Help National Programs in Three EU Accession and an ECA Country”, the main aim of which is to sum up the foundation of knowledge economy in the cities and their regions participating in this project. This report constitutes the starting point of the next station that should summarize the directions, methods and means of development based on the identified foundation elements.

 

In the frame of the program realized with the help of The World Bank, we may learn a lot about the development possibilities of the city and can introduce a clearer vision producing and using knowledge to the management of the city and the inhabitants.

 

During the overview of the actual conditions studies, statistical databases, labor information, diploma project were used.

 

 


1.1         SHORT HISTORY

 

Tatabánya – county law town – the county town of Komárom-Esztergom County, with its 91 square kilometers administrative territory – thousandth part of Hungary – gives home for 75,000 people, with the suburbs it is more than 90,000.

It’s a young town; it became a town n 1947, by the union of four almost entirely built together villages on the bases of the decree of the Minister of the Interior of that time. From its former villages Bánhida, Alsógalla and Felsőgalla are villages of settlers. The battles during the Turkish occupation destroyed those settlements, which were flourishing since the age of the Áprád. The owner of the territory of that time, the Eszterházy-estate of Tata settled German and Slovak villains during the 18th century in to the destroyed villages.

In the area the building of the Budapest-Vienna railway created the conditions for the huge economical and social changes at the turn of the century, as the cheap and quick traffic-transport possibility made it profitable to exploit the huge amount of brown coal. In 1896 a young enterprise, which was founded in Budapest, the Hungarian General Coal Mining Joint-Stock Company (MÁK Rt.) bought the right to the coal-search then to the exploitation from the estate, and greatly changed the region’s aspect as a result of mining and connecting industrialization.

Beside the exploitation of the rich coal-supply the mining company exploited and worked up the other available minerals, in this way they set up a vertically connected mining field and an industrial area.

In the mines they also found karstwater of good quality, which provided water supply for the local area. They established limekilns, portland stone-, then bauxite-cement factories for exploiting and processing limestone and marl.

Locally built brick factories produced the necessary building material for public buildings and the workers’ houses. Coal and coal-cake factory, coal-distilling factory, acetylene factory, factory producing paper bag and barrels containing cement and other factories increased the production efficiency by serving mines, industrial works.

By uniting the nearby villages and as a new city being promoted to the capital of Komárom County, Tatabánya had new managing and administrative tasks. The dynamic industrialization policy of 1950s and 1960s also required for increasing coal production in Tatabánya. In the heyday of “Coalmines” the company employed 15-17 thousand people, there were no families in the city without any links to the company.

By 1980s the coal stock of Tata Basin had got exhausted, so the Coalmine Company of Tatabánya – which was determining in the life of the city – was closed down after the political changes. The economy of the city, living of the people reached a crisis.

But due to economic and intellectual potentials accumulated during decades, the excellent economic geographic position of the city, the improved infrastructure and the dynamic organizing work of the city management, escaping from critical stage was successful. The former “City of Coal” that based its existence only on coal opened its gates to new and various enterprises and companies with national and foreign capital. Commercial shopping centers, prosperous industrial areas provide the facility of well-balanced and safe life for people living here for long term.

 

1.2         FAVORABLE LOCATION

 

From the point of view of traffic and transportation the city has favorable situation, because the M1 motorway (E60, E75), with its two exits leads next to Tatabánya. This assures fast road access to Vienna (150 km), to Győr (55 km) and to Budapest (55 km) and the main road no. 1 cuts across the city. The modern, electric railway line of Budapest-Tatabánya-Győr-Vienna provides a high level service for the transportation of goods and passengers to Western Europe. The fastest railway line of the county has two stations at Tatabánya. The nearest inland port and boarder crossing-place, which is for both road and railway crossing available, can be found along the River Danube at Komárom, 33 km far from the city. Some 10 km from Tatabánya, at the village of Kecskéd, there is a sporting airfield, which is capable of handling passenger and freight transportation. International airports (Vienna 1.5 hours, Budapest 1 hour) are easy to reach on the motorway.

 

1.3         THE PLACE OF TATABÁNYA IN HUNGARY

 

The place of Tatabánya in the geographical, economical, political and cultural life of the country has great influence on the city’s situation, as in case of all cities. From geographical point of view Tatabánya has a favorable situation, however it cannot compete with the high place of a capital city. Thanks to this and the failures and lacks of the central municipal financing system the city can mainly rely on its own economical, financial and human resources. But how is the city’s place in Hungary?

 

Tatabánya can be found in Komárom-Esztergom County, the smallest from the 19 counties of Hungary, occupying 2.4 % (2,265 km2) of the county’s territory. Out of 75 settlements in the county there are 8, which have city rank. Tatabánya is the only one with county rights. The county’s performance, which gives 2.5 % of Hungary’s GDP, falls with 16.7 % significantly behind the country average. From the point of view of the county GDP per capita (4,253 USD) it is on place 7 among the counties. The breakdown of the county GDP according the main groups of the national economy sectors haven’t changed greatly: thanks to the dynamic industrial growth in the year 2000 the share of the industry increased with 3 percentage point to 42 % and the share of the services decreased from 51 % to 49 %.

There are 33,024 economic organizations registered in the county this year, out of which 60 % are individual enterprises and 32 % are companies. Most of the enterprises operate in the real estate, economic services, trade, maintenance and industry sectors.

 


2           LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

 

2.1         ECONOMIC SITUATION

 

Due to the closing of the big industrial companies, a number of enterprises appeared on the scene in our city. The number of these enterprises is actually over 1,800. Out of these enterprises, the net sales revenues of the first 100 are over HUF 50,000,000. There are 21 independent economic units with municipal equity participation, in the fields of town management services mainly.

In terms of economic development, the endeavor of Tatabánya city’s administration is aimed at replacing the former heavy industrial structure by engineering industries using up-to-date technologies, reckoning with the locally available professional skills and trade culture. At the same time we intend to promote all job creating investments and ventures in the city. In order to raise the interests of investors and to speed up the process of necessary administration, the Municipality of Tatabánya established the Economic Development Organization in 1996. Its aims and tasks are the following:

-             to improve the situation of labor market

-             to create employment

-             to promote, coordinate and manage the settlement of new ventures and factories

-             to do city-marketing activity

-             trade and service development

-             establishing Research + Development

-             improvement of life quality.

 

Sectors of the economy enjoying priority:

-             automotive industry, automotive supplier industry

-             machine industry

-             electronic industry

-             packaging industry, plastic industry, chemical industry

-             environmental industry

-             logistics

-             development of tourist, sport, cultural, leisure and entertaining facilities

-             trade development.

Results of the economic development:

-             influx of about HUF 90 billion (€ 365 million) working assets

-             more than 20 new companies

-             more than 5,000 new workplaces and additional 2,200 workplaces are being created

-             establishment of 2 hypermarkets with about 7,000 m2 space for customers

-             realization of the building project of 4 housing parks.

 

From the international economic processes the most outstanding is the appearance of overproduction on the electronic and transmission market. The multinational companies take to fusions in the interest of strengthening their positions. The price competition is increased by the presence on the cheaper East-European and Asian market; the opening of the Chinese market is a good example for that.

The city’s economic development entered into its second phase. The simple lease work and part production is being generated by products and technologies with higher added value. The workforce in Tatabánya has become expensive for the lease work. However impacts going on in the world economy also influence the production of the companies operating in the county seat. Solution may mean the involvement of production units requiring higher training and realization of R + D.

There are 3 sectors playing an important role in the city’s economy: electronics, automotive-part production and plastic processing. Significant suppliers group around these sectors. Enterprises giving a higher added value and employing higher trained professionals are present in greater shares in Tatabánya. At the company Artesyn for example production of supply-units represents a greater proportion in the company’s production, so less workers will be employed probably in the future. For this reason we need to proceed with searching and settling down of new investors.

The construction of the first R + D center will start in the near future: the company Zenon Ltd. has prepared the investment plans already, and established 30 new workplaces for R + D engineers.

2.2         NEW HOMES IN TATABÁNYA

 

In the second half of the 1970’s the continuous decrease of home construction may be noticed in Hungary. The changes in the 90’s had an influence on all sectors of the economy; the construction industry was also among them. The declining market could not keep the big-size companies. The great national investments ended, the demand for the construction industry decreased, part of the national construction companies transformed, others failed.

The new supporting system of home construction was released in November 1999, concerning the new constructions from 1st February 2000. In the frame of this program young couples and those having 3 or more children could get credit with better terms for the construction or purchase of a new home.

From 1st July 2000 started a complementary loan support, for which married couples with or without children and persons raising their child(ren) alone could apply independent from their age. The maximum supported credit increased to HUF 10 million. The National Supported Tenement Flat Program has also started, in the frame of which the municipalities could get subsidies through tenders for increasing the number of their tenement flats.

 

Thanks to the changes favorable processes started in year 2000 on the field of home construction. The number of new-built homes multiplied 1.6 times in Komárom-Esztergom County. However the group of the constructors changed. The municipal constructions fell into the background. Population constructions are dominating, but the role of economic organizations also increased. It is reflected in the fact that increasing part of the new-built homes is offered for purchase or rental.

 

In the frame of the tenement flat program the government gave HUF 138.44 million subsidy, which makes possible the modernization and energy-saving renovation of almost 2000 homes. In the course of the blockhouse program the modernization and renovation of all together 147 homes can be realized with a subsidy of HUF 245 million.

As Mr. János Bencsik, the Mayor of Tatabánya explained several times the construction of non-social, cost-orientated homes satisfying higher requirement became necessary also in Tatabánya. The demand comes from such employees and employers, who appear on the labour market of the city as representatives of lack-professions.

There are several places with infrastructure and utilities in the county seat, which are suitable for this purpose and the construction of some home-parks is also in progress.

 

2.3         TATABÁNYA IN FLOWER

 

In the past years the flower plantation in the whole city became a tradition. The municipality continuously develops the parks and public areas in the city and improves the level of park maintenance. The green areas taking form, the well-kept plants and renovated playgrounds all contribute to the aesthetic city picture and the cleanness of the air. In the interest of this the municipality beds out many thousands of plants (70 thousand this year) every year at different points of the city. The program is important also because Tatabánya wishes to take part in the National Public Place Beautifying Activity and in the Flowering Hungary Competition. The inhabitants also joined to the decoration with the help of the “For a Nicer and More Human Environment” tender.

 

A program started last year to establish a public park on a 10-hectare area in the center of the city. The transforming green area ensures entertainment, sport and leisure facilities of high standard for the inhabitants in the city and gives a home for the city programs moving great number of people. For the realization of the plans and ideas all together a HUF 300 million investment and at least 10 years are needed.

 

2.4         INVESTMENTS

 

2.4.1        Tenement flat program

 

The council tenement flats have been privatized for 10 years, so there wasn’t any flat may be offered in possession of the municipality for tenants with high standards.

But the dynamic development of the county seat’s economic and commercial life comes together with shaking up of the real estate market, housing parks arising.

The biggest investment from side of the municipality is the tenement flat program, in the frame of which the municipality is going to allot HUF 800 million partly form own sources and partly from tenders of the Széchenyi Plan. In the housing park that is being built by the city with the HUF 368 million subsidy of the Széchenyi Program, there will be 54 tenement flats financed by the home foundation of the municipality. With the building of these cost based tenement flats the municipality wishes to help the qualified, skilled workforce to get a flat and keep them staying in Tatabánya.

 

2.4.2        Public road network

 

The county seat pays attention beside the industrial development to the renovation and modernization of the city’s road network and pavements. The municipality spends almost HUF 200 million on roads, bus stations and public areas in housing estates.

The municipality started its own investment project couple of months ago in the Industrial Park. Pavement, cycle path and public lighting will be realized for ensuring safe traffic of 3,000 employees working in the Industrial Park and improving traffic conditions of the companies operating in the park. In the interest of this investment exceeding HUF 130 million, the city rounded off its HUF 62 million own resource with HUF 14.5 million from a Széchenyi Plan tender, HUF 11.2 million from the regional development council and the contribution of the companies operating in the Industrial Park.

 

2.4.3        Selective waste collection

 

The treatment, disposal of garbage and waste means a problem in all cities’ life. However waste can also have a value. If it is selectively collected that makes it good for the processing industry to use it as secondary raw material. Based on this conception we may meet waste collector places on many point of the county seat, which make it possible to get rid of the waste in a refined way.

What is the purpose of the introduction of selective waste collection?

  1. Returning the utilizable waste in the processing industry
  2. Separate treatment of hazardous elements in the waste and trough this the reduction of environment load because of the settlements’ solid waste. The selective waste collection realized with the help of the population means first of all the selective collection of such materials, which are saleable or directly utilizable as secondary raw material. The storage tanks in public areas serve this purpose.

Why is it important? An increasingly high amount of waste arises in Hungary, and also in our city. The continuous increase of the settlements’ solid waste may be explained with the lifestyle changes, the consumer habits, the packaging techniques, changes in the product composition of the food industry.

Among the wastes arising in the households there are such wastes, which include valuable raw materials and they are suitable for recycle (e.g. paper, plastic, glass). If we place these materials in the traditional waste tanks, they will be lost for good and new raw materials need to be used that leads to wasting and the increase of activities causing damage to the environment. It is much cheaper for example to produce paper from recycled paper or aluminum from non-ferrous metal, than the direct production. With the glass produced from scrap glass 15% energy saving can be reached. Saving of natural resources is not only important from financial point of view, but also from environmental aspects.

The RWE Umwelt Tatabánya Co. has established a new building and a court for waste management. Through this HUF 212.5 million investment the selective waste collection and the environmentally sound reuse of communal waste became available for 21 settlements in 3 counties. The waste law adjusted to the directives of the European Union precisely prescribes what may the waste include. The collector places described above also help to keep this law.

In early times the municipality had to choose between garbage treatment and waste management. The city decided to choose the second possibility and prepared a long-term program. So the RWE Umwelt Tatabánya Co. established its waste depot on the property bought from the mining company that was financed partly by the municipality.

The new investment makes possible to introduce the selective waste collection in Tatabánya and its region. 30 collector places were established for this purpose. With the help of this system the inhabitants can take the cleanness of the city in their own hands. With the new collector places Tatabánya is the leader in waste management.

The separately collected paper and plastic is sorted and trusted in the new building. Metal and other materials may be sold straight after sorting.

The RWE Umwelt Tatabánya Co. has the right to collect and transport more than 500 type of hazardous waste. By the time new types of waste get into the reutilization system, like the broken asphalt. For the utilization of this asphalt the most modern technology will be used.

The Co. is committed to manage its activity in harmonization with economy and environmental protection.

 

2.4.4        Coloplast Ltd.

 

The family in the city’s industrial park has a new “child”. In the past 8 years many Western companies built their production centers on the former cornfield. The newest investor among them is the Coloplast Hungary Manufacturing Ltd. having its seat in Denmark that produces medical appliances.

The company’s 13,000 m2 production hall was opened in May. In this plant of Coloplast 300 person will be employed in the next months. Coloplast has chosen Tatabánya, as its Hungarian headquarter because of the skilled workforce can be found in the former mining town. The company is also present in Denmark, China and Costa Rica.

 

2.4.5        Zenon Ltd.

 

Hungary can keep its competitiveness in the 21. century only if it gives place for technologies belonging to the forefront of the world. This conception guided the Zenon Ltd. in the realization of its new membrane production plant, where parts for water clarifying and sewage filtering equipments will be produced.

Water is becoming more and more a carefully watched treasure. The government pays also a stressed attention to the cleanness of the surface and underground water and in the interest of this several investments with sewage filtering purposes need to be realized in the next 5-10 years.

The HUF 3 billion investment that will be the second membrane-module production plant of the world and will be realized by the worldwide known company, the market leading water-clarifying membrane manufacturer, Zenon Environmental Inc.

The Canadian company started the building up of its European company network for 10 years. The company started its first Hungarian business investment in Tatabánya, where its R + D center will start its activity within one year.

 

2.5         TOURISM AND CULTURE

 

Although, our city is not well-known for its tourist attractions, there are sights, which are worth visiting. The symbol of Tatabánya, the Turul-monument can be seen above the city on Stone-hill. The monument was erected in 1907 in memorial of the conquest of Hungarians. The statue of the Turul bird, which is the largest bird statue in the world and the biggest bronze statue in Central-Europe, is the work of Gyula Donáth. The Szelim-cave, on of the nicest beauty spots of the area, can be found a couple hundred meters from the Turul-monument. Remains of the fireplaces of the cavemen and bones of animals were excavated in the cave. The relics of the coal-basin of Tatabánya (shaft-tower, forge, miner house etc.) can be visited n the Outdoor Mining Museum, which is located in the above ground facilities of the old mine no. XV.

There are permanent exhibitions of local-history, history of industry, history of schools and periodical exhibitions of archaeology, art, photography and ethnography are open for visitors.

 

2.5.1        The Népház

 

The Népház was built between 1913-1917, and since 1994 it has been operating as Jászai Mari Theatre, it has its own theatrical company. 150 in house productions and 52 guest plays amuse the audience of Tatabánya and the county annually. The 100 years old Symphonic Orchestra of Tatabánya and the Miner Folk-dance Group with more than 100 adult and children member are also operating here.

The so-called Patrónus Kör (Patron Circle) was established a couple of years ago, the members of which give also financial support to the Népház-Jászai Mari Theatre. About 50 persons make a contribution to the enrichment of the shows and the presentation of a play with high standards, higher costs and more spectacles. Most of them are entrepreneurs and there are ones, who assure to their employees the participation on the shows and the meetings with the actors after the plays. The purpose of this is the high level entertainment and to get in close touch with the audience.

Thanks to the development of the theatre several, significant own plays and guest performances made the selection colourful this year.

The theatre of Tatabánya gave till now mainly for young, talented actors a chance to play, but the audience of today needs the play of “stars” also. It would be worth to keep this demand also in mind that not only high level, but audience-attracting plays should be played in the theatre of Tatabánya.

 

2.5.2        The Museum of Tatabánya is expecting the visitors with open doors

 

There are also a lot of things of interest in the Museum of Tatabánya that is located in Közművelődés Háza working also as cultural centre.

The 18th May is the world-day of the museums. This day on every part of the world people are celebrating and the museums are expecting the visitors with open doors. This celebration is especially important for the Hungarian museums, because the matter of the Hungarian museums is 200 years old this year. 200 years ago the first Hungarian public collection, the Hungarian National Museum was established on the initiation of Ferenc Széchenyi. Every year this day the “Museum of the Year” honourable title is presented in the National Museum according to the advice of the professionals. The Museum of Tatabánya also gained this title for its activity in 1997.

 

2.5.3        Cultural events, meetings, fairs

 

The greatest cultural and sport meeting of Tatabánya is the three-day truck festival. The event could be arranged this year at the eighth time. During these three days the members of about 35-40 nationals are staying as guests in our city and visitors are coming from almost all parts of the country.

The festival is also important in the life of Tatabánya, because it isn’t only for the truck drivers, not only their event, but also the whole city’s and the county’s event also. Truck festival is held in Hungary formally only in Szeged and Tatabánya.

 

The fair called Living Space was organized this year in spring the third time with the purpose to make it a tradition. The main saying of the fair is creating a home, so first of all furnishings and construction products are introduced on the exhibition.

 

The Vértes Expo is organized at the end of summer in August, which is the third biggest event in this part of the country according its character. This fair is first of all the review of investment and consumer goods, on which several cultural and professional lessons and meetings get also place.

 

The St. John’s night carnival was organized this year the sixth time. The program is very colourful and the number of the programs is increasing from year to year. On the 2-day event folks and handicrafts fair, sport games, competitions, carnival parade, jumping of St. John’s blaze, firework and carnival bonfire get place.

 


3           EDUCATED AND SKILLED POPULATION

 

3.1         SCHOLARSHIP FOR THE COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY STUDENTS OF TATABÁNYA

 

The municipality founded a scholarship system in 1998 for the purpose to further the employment of local career-starter by the companies operating in the city. Thanks to this initiation the municipality of Tatabánya earned the titled “The Youth Friendly Municipality of the Year” in 2001.

191 college and university students applied for the tender advertised at the eighth time this year. From these students 86 have met the main requirement: they had better study average than 4,5 in the last semester.

 

3.2         CIVIL ORGANIZATIONS

 

Several chambers are working in the region. One of the most important ones is the Regional Chamber of Engineers. The chamber was founded in 1996 with 251 members. This number increased to 508 till today. Keeping a designer and professional register, judgment of engineer or architectural activity is also among its tasks.

Beside that the chamber makes a point of establishing the engineer education in Hungary harmonizing with the European practice. Because the excellent Hungarian professionals have to fill much more requirements than their colleagues in Western Europe, so they may start with a major disadvantage at the EU accession. That’s why the reorganization of the present education system has high priority.

 

In the last couple of years tendering became natural, as inseparable part of civil life. The communities, even the institutions of the city became almost professionals in the methods of finding sources. A basic condition of their program planning is the municipality as reliable partner, because the frames ensured through the municipality have major importance in the life of many organizations and communities. With ensuring tender funds the municipality’s aims are forming the city image, supporting high-quality public events, programs, publications, brochures, which have tradition in the city or to create new tradition. A stable tendering group was established during the past years and the organizations, institutes count on this possibility. With this financial help they realized events that are organic part of Tatabánya’s intellectual life.

The municipality ensures this year tendering opportunity in several categories for the communities. Tenders may be submitted in education, social, health, cultural, drug prevention, youth and foreign contact themes.

Sources were collected in a common fund by the municipality, so the tender could be advertised with an amount of HUF 6 million. The municipality ensures additional HUF 6 million for rounding off the applicant’s own resources. In this way the municipality can support the communities’ own resources, if they intend to apply for national or international tenders with different Tatabánya programs, but they don’t have the required amount of money.

This new form of support has justified the hopes: the communities brought to Tatabánya 3 times more money than the own resource ensured by the municipality.

 

3.3         CO-OPERATIONS

 

Favorable processes have started in the city on the field of co-operations. The Economic Development Organization of the County Town Tatabánya in the frame of the “Cities of Change” program has prepared a research theme list connecting to the economic development strategy of the city that was sent to the College of Modern Business Studies (MÜTF) and offered to conclude a research agreement. The co-operation fitted in well with the education development strategy of the college, so an agreement was concluded between the college and the Economic Development Organization.

Objective of this co-operational agreement is the scientific and professional establishment and organized realization of R + D themes using the knowledge base, international and national relationships of MÜTF.

Besides fixing the main themes of the research work in connection with economic development 3 project plans were prepared. One of them has been realized and the other two is in progress.

 

The projects are followings:

 

  1. City marketing survey of Tatabánya on CD-ROM

 

As the result of this project, the CD-ROM will look over the moments of the city’s and its region’s development, the local distribution of the populations’ demographical and social characteristics, the home and living conditions and the city life. Collection and preprocessing of the information will be realized in co-operation with the county organizations and involving the students. Main tasks of this research: documentation of districts in Tatabánya, registration of institutes and services, trade monitoring, presence of new commercial units and their influences and preparing a tourist map of Komárom-Esztergom County.

 

  1. Survey of the population’s shopping practice in Tatabánya and its drawing area and of the present and expected situation of the private storekeepers

 

Objectives of this project are:

 

The research will be realized with the involvement of the students, who will help primarily in arrangement of inquiries and setting information.

 

  1. Organizing a course with the title “Methods, techniques and tricks of the EU’s regional project planning and tender preparing.”

 

Objective of the course is to give information and experiences in order to be prepared for the EU accession. Taking part on this course is recommended for professionals of small- and middle-size companies, regional associations, enterprise development funds, municipalities, civil organizations and those dealing with interest protection. They intend to plan or take part in the future in projects financed by the EU.

According the plans participants may learn information about regional planning, preparing tenders and financing, which meet the EU practice and they can get answers to their problems and ideas. In the frame of the manual training they may get an overall picture of preparing tenders, regional project examples will be introduced and case studies will be analyzed.

The course took place in April. However experiences came to other results as planned. Despite of the exemption of charges the interest was law and the professors, who drew up the presentation themes, approached the single parts of the presentation extremely from theoretical side. So the program was more likely a college lecture, than a course for practicing professionals to widen their knowledge.

 

Many local big-size companies could be won over to support the local educational institutes in a contractual form. So major part of the training fund remains in the city. According the law 75 % of the contribution may be paid to local educational institutes. This amount exceeded HUF 100 million last year. Thanks to this possibility the future workforce can be trained according the companies’ requirements.

 

A co-operational contract was undersigned by the Közép-Pannon Regionális Fejlesztési Rt. (Middle-Pannonian Regional Development Co.) and the Economic Development Organization. On the basis of the contract the organization helps in the entire county to small- and middle-size companies for example with investment and financing consultation.

Thanks to this co-operation the range of possibilities and means widened on the field of economic development, so more sources could probably be gained for the county and the city.

 

3.4         EDUCATION

 

More than 8,000 pupils are educated in 21 elementary schools of the city. For secondary education there are 2 gymnasiums and 7 high schools operating in Tatabánya. The College for Modern Business Studies, established in 1992, offers both full-time, part-time and post graduate education. The aim of the school is to educate managers with the knowledge of a minimum two foreign languages, who can cope with the challenge of business life. A section of the Gábor Dénes Technical Informatics College also operates in the city.

The International Institute for Creative Music Education was established in 1993 in Tatabánya and it became the workshop of various Central-European musical trends.

50 different professions are taught in the educational institute of the city. The school system of Tatabánya has adapted to the changes of the economic circumstances.

 

With regard of the high-level education the city needs some further development, as the higher educational places have a very important role in forming and developing the intellectual aspect of each geographical area.

The student programs make the cultural life colourful, the new graduates staying in Tatabánya strengthen the city’s and the region’s intellectual performance.

But according to a survey the county can hardly keep the future graduates. So it is important for the city to be open for new independent higher educational institutes and off-seat educational places, which increase the possibility that the future intellectuals won’t leave Tatabánya.

 

The number of students in the College for Modern Business Studies operating for 10 years in Tatabánya reached this year the 3,500 persons planned originally for the year 2005. The number of teachers increased from 110 to 130. The college plans to start a new field of study. In the frame of this training, which meets the practical economic requirement of the region, a technical type of higher education would be realized in the college of Tatabánya. The professional and financial possibilities are being sized up.

 

3.5         EMPLOYMENT

 

The local office of the County Labour Centre organizes every year a job fair. The job fair in spring of last year was organized for the differently-abled workforce and in September for the career-starter. The job fair this year also arouse great interest, during which this time employed people could seek new employment. So this way such persons could also get a possibility, who wish to find a better job, another one nearer to their home or would like to change because of professional promotion.

Almost a thousand people have visited the program, where about 20 companies were waiting for the job-seekers with 400 job offers and three labour offices were looking for 150-200 employees additionally on behalf of several companies. Supply is very different: from insurance agent to soldier, from semi-skilled work to quality controller.

There was a greater demand for semi-skilled workers than before, but today more and more companies are looking for qualified workforce.

 


4           ENVIRONMENT CONDUCTIVE TO INNOVATION

 

4.1         INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIPS OF TATABÁNYA AND ITS REGION

 

The international research program PICS, realized between 1999-2000 deals with the relationship of cities and its regions, the regional influences of European integration and globalisation.

The Sociological Research Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Science and its Middle Transdanubian Research Group has made the researches together with the colleagues of the academy in Paris. The French, Polish and Hungarian research group researched the global and local features, which determine the regional social processes of the Hungarian and Polish transition, economic and social relations of the city centres and its environment. The participating professionals didn’t stress the present situation, moreover the future prospects.

As a result of this research arose the final study with the title “The Social and Economic Relationships of Tatabánya and its Region; the Elements to Increase Competitiveness”. It has been stated that the economic restructuring was the fastest, the appearance of the foreign capital was the most active and in improving competitiveness the most spectacular results could be showed up in this region.

Primary object of the research was to explore in case of Tatabánya and Oroszlány one of the important competitiveness conditions needed for the European integration, the relations of the city to its region, especially to Tata and Oroszlány and the sociological elements, interest-structures and social conflicts determining the development of the co-operation. The municipality of Tatabánya, Tata and Oroszlány see this research as a starting point that makes it possible to define what to do in the following 10 years in the interest of increasing competitiveness and intensification of the co-operation.

The study analyzes the economic, local, social and political relations of these three cities, their dependence relations and explores the impacts influencing the established economic situation.

It examines the sub urbanization processes, which settlements receive the people moving out of Tatabánya with favourable and with rather unfavourable social position into, and as an influence of these mechanisms what kind of social conflicts arise. It analyzes the political, power relations of Tatabánya, Tata and Oroszlány according to the attitude to co-operation and the regional co-operation between the municipalities. It deals with two important social conditions of the regional development, the environmental protection and the civil social organizations in single chapters.

 

4.2         PROGRAMS, CONFERENCES

 

There are two basic things needed for the economic development: money and collaboration. They are needed for the market members to get resources.

The Hungarian Investment and Trade Development Agency (ITD), the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Komárom-Esztergom County, the Euroregion Vág-Duna-Ipoly and the municipality of the county organized a professional forum this year. Main topic of the meeting were the utilization possibilities of the Széchenyi Plan and the SAPARD structural founds.

One of the important tasks of the forum was to introduce the resources and possibilities of the tenders to the participants.

From the programs of Széchenyi Plan that one has to be mentioned, which deals with strengthening the enterprises, home building and developing tourism. However with regard to the whole economy the regional economy building program, the R + D and innovation program, the information society and economic development program offer important possibilities.

In case of every region it can be said that if it gets the needed resources that is followed by prosperity.

 

The Hungarian Investment and Trade Development Agency organized also the Honeywell Middle Eastern European Supplier Conference and Businessman Meeting in Budapest between 13-15 May. The American company with 120 thousand employees throughout the world invited its American and Western European primary suppliers to Budapest, who had business talks with the companies of the region and looked at the investment possibilities in Hungary for the purpose to establish industrial co-operations. The Slovenian, Polish, German, Dutch, French and American participants visited the industrial park in Tatabánya to get some practical experience on the last day of the conference.

 


5           SUMMARY

 

The powers keeping up the growth and operation of the city have exhausted for 12 years. The objective was that time to stop the decline of Tatabánya before the collapse of the one sidedly developed heavy industry buries everything under itself. The objective wasn’t only to keep the city’s ability to operate, but it had to be striven for starting Tatabánya on the way becoming a real city. After handling the crisis and making the preparatory works the economic independence of the city became stronger, because only a stable economy can provide safe job for the inhabitants. It is very important for the city to have its own mentality, in which people respect and preserve the traditions, and different opinions have also place.

 

The fact that the settlements in the region have made its co-operation tighter contributed to the speeding up of the economic development and increasing the effectiveness of the economic development work. The Által-ér Union, including the municipalities, the important members of the economy and the civil organizations of the region, has worked successfully to extend the economic development over the whole region that has started in Tatabánya. The billion-HUF renovation of the water treatment plant has been finished, the municipality has done the recultivation of the old refuse dump, has built a waste selection plant, has started the recultivation of the old mines, has developed the rescue technique of the fire service and has extended the industrial park. All these works gained an almost HUF 2 billion subsidy. The companies settled down in the industrial park had a share of almost HUF 1.5 billion in the Széchenyi Plan.

 

The management of the city was working primary on creating the conditions of daily living in the past decade, namely on the economic development. This is the base. Meanwhile other demands appeared and striving for satisfying them means for the municipality the objectives creating better home conditions, establishing orderly public areas, creating high-level institutional provision. Above this level we would like to establish such services in the city that ensure the opportunity to entertainment of high standard and to live the magic atmosphere of communal being together. So there may be public areas, cultural institutions, and even literary cafés. A lot of people would like to see steps taking in the field of body culture. An indoor swimming pool of high level, an open-air bath, a stadium, and covered tennis court show up as demand from side of the inhabitants. The high level entertainment and recreational facilities are missing in the city. The harmonization between the built and natural environment, stopping former environmental damages and preventing additional damages with making our everyday life more conscious have to be also continued. Doing everything in the interest of creating a friendlier and more homely environment.

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