5.1.3 Allocation of public funds
The legislative scene is in agreement with actual European standards with regard to spending public money.
The cultural budget of the government, however, traditionally lacks transparency, which renders international comparisons impossible without additional research. Here are a few examples from the budget for 2011: HUF 8.2 billion (ca. 30 million EUR, nearly 10% of the 2011 cultural budget) serves to provide "support to cultural corporations", i.e. companies owned fully or partly by the government, such as the National Theatre Share Holding Company, the National Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Cinema, several museums, the Royal Castle in GödöllÅ‘, a huge 19th century fortress at Komárom and so on, without breaking down by cultural sectors. HUF 10.7 billion (ca. 40 million EUR) was earmarked for the support of "public collections" (i.e. libraries, museums, archives directly supervised by the ministry) without specification or listing. The central budget contains earmarked contributions to local cultural centres (also known as "houses of culture"), its exact amount, however, remains hidden since it is included in the budget line for "public utility, administrative, sport and cultural tasks" of local governments.
As another area of opacity, a quarter of the budget of the National Cultural Fund is at the discretion of the minister: these grants, about 7-8 million EUR a year, are subsequently disclosed on the website of the Fund. To illustrate the scope of this source: in 2011, 498 applicants received 1 725 million HUF (about 6 million EUR, average 14 257 EUR) covering the entire scale of culture. The smallest amount (40 000 HUF, 140 EUR) went to a folksong competition, while the largest was 70 million HUF (250 000 EUR) for the annual national film show.