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Located in the North of the country – across Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén, Heves and Nógrád counties – and bordering with Slovakia, the main cities of this administrative division include Miskolc, Salgótarján and Eger. An old industrial region, it shares 35.3 percent of the regional GDP, higher than the national average. It is also home to two traditional wine districts, including Tokaj-Hegyalja, which is a world heritage site and producer of the world’s oldest Botrytized wines. Registering 744 FDI-supported enterprises, employing 40,221 people, the region has a GDP of €5,255 per capita, at 38.6 per cent the EU average.

Key sectors include automotives, machinery and rail vehicles; agricultural machinery and food industries; pharmaceuticals and ICT, electrics-electronics; and Optomechatronics. The region’s traditional specialisation in metallurgy and chemicals is gradually shifting to machinery, automotive parts and components; electronics and plastic moulding. The wine-growing area spans 6.3 per cent of Hungarian vineyards, and the number of registered producers totals 14,575.

Based on the quality of education and R&D centres, potential for growth lies in the region’s innovation, while an important research performer includes logistics and production; engineering and Nanotechnology. Tourism has also attracted a substantial amount of EU co-financed investment.

There are 27 industrial parks, 196 research centres (6.5 per cent of the national share) and several knowledge-based clusters, with an evolving collaboration portfolio involving innovative foreign-owned and indigenous companies. All professional fields are covered by educational and science facilities and a high level of training in natural sciences, economics, IT, engineering, agriculture, medical and foreign language studies.