Hungary - Country Commercial Guide
Safety and Security
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The safety and security equipment market, including the defense-related technology market, has become a leading sector for U.S. exporters in the Hungarian market. The number of companies has been shrinking but their combined annual revenue has been increasing.   The number of companies in the safety/security industry has been on decline since 2013 and there were less than 4,000 companies operating in this sector in 2022, employing approximately 50,000 people. 

The domestic market is dominated by imported equipment, especially in the area of high-tech security and technology solutions used by Hungarian military and law enforcement organizations.  Typically, physical security services are provided by local companies due to local standards and licensing requirements. The market for fire safety and security alarm systems is one of the best-organized segments within the industry.

Foreign companies are active in the supply of security equipment.  Perimeter and site security systems, video-surveillance, screening and image analyzation equipment, access control systems, and fire protection systems are frequently imported from French, German, Italian, American, Israeli, Japanese, Chinese and Taiwanese companies. 

The following systems have local production: data protection, optical registration devices, systems for technical safety of buildings, signal receiving equipment, and cryptographic security units. There are several local developers of biometric identification systems, biometric access control, and time and attendance systems.

To protect European citizens, the EU regulates the use of data provided by Europeans for all companies working in the European Union and/or processing the personal data of EU citizens.  Please see the data privacy section of this report for more information.

Hungary’s armed forces are undergoing radical change as all its capabilities are in the process of being reformed and updated. The delivery of the first two Airbus H225M helicopters out of 10 in total was an important milestone in fulfilling the reform plan. 

In addition, the special forces will receive six H225M helicopters equipped with unique HForce weapons specially developed for Hungary. The package includes a 20mm machine gun and a 70mm rocket launcher, and guided anti-tank missiles will be available at a later date. Europe’s security situation has changed radically given the Ukraine-Russian war, and the pressure of illegal migration on the country’s southern border requires regular border patrol. The Hungarian Customs Office has been purchasing cargo scanners, mobile backscatter vans, and high energy mobile system to be used at various border crossing points. 

The Hungarian Ministry of Defense has exhibited a trend toward using European-made military technologies. The new Leopard 2A7HU tanks arrived at the Hungarian armed forces in August.  Hungary placed orders for 44 such main battle tanks.  The German company will deliver the rest of the ordered tanks by 2025. Another milestone is that Hungary has signed an agreement to manufacture combat drones in cooperation with Israeli and German companies as part of an effort to grow and modernize its military and defense industry.  These drones will be produced in cooperation with Israeli defense technology company UVision along with a German partner.  Hungary has also announced plans to produce Gidran tactical armored fighting vehicles in Hungary in cooperation with a Turkish firm.   


Airport security, manufacturing site, and warehouse protection are the most developing segments in the sector.  Both the Budapest International Airport and Debrecen International Airport have initiated security-related development projects, including passenger and cargo screening that require implementation of additional airport security equipment (and upgrades for existing equipment) at border crossing points.  X-ray cargo screening systems are also being implemented at land border crossing points and railroads. This has special importance as passenger and cargo traffic increased 24 percent and 12 percent respectively in the first half of 2023 compared to the same period in 2022.  As of January 2023, the Hungarian government was reportedly close to closing a deal to purchase Budapest Airport, which it plans to operate jointly with French firm Vinci.  The development of BUD Cargo City will allow air cargo up to 300,000 tons per year.  Among further developments, warehouse space will also be expanded with offices and other supporting infrastructure and security surveillance systems which will contribute to increasing the regional significance of the airport. 

Security technology for property protection at manufacturing and industrial facilities and warehouses as well as public areas also present opportunities for innovative solutions.  In recent years, the security and building automation market – thanks to increased real estate developments – increased with special focus on anti-intrusion equipment, fire safety, integrated building automation equipment and CCTVs.    

Within the anti-intrusion sector, access control remains an important and highly competitive area.  The industry is migrating toward IP and integrated solutions.  The trend is to move away from proprietary technology towards open systems that allow the integration of multiple applications.  Other drivers include the growth of time and attendance applications, the demand for smart card and optical card systems, the need to reduce fraud, and increasingly an acceptance of biometric systems.  Training for integrators and installers is essential to effectively meet end-user needs.

An increasing number of private properties have security and alarm systems installed.  Opportunities exist for private security operators – such as security guard service companies – to provide technology and services to private citizens.  Examples of public-private collaboration include municipalities and private security service companies that utilize public security cameras and CCTV systems installed by banks, hypermarkets, retail shops and in public places to survey areas and provide services to businesses or private citizens, all in cooperation with the municipal police.

Within the safety arena, potential opportunities exist in CBRN protection, particularly for new, advanced sensors that reveal chemical agents and provide more effective protection.  In terms of investments in this niche market, minor cuts have been seen in the budgets of the responsible agencies. While public sector spending will remain less than expected, continued opportunities exist among well-funded organizations, banks, and government agencies such as the Counter Terrorism Center, Disaster Management Center, the National Police, and the SWAT.

Police are using an increasing number of drones every year to battle against traffic violation and street crimes.  In 2023 alone, traffic police have used drones in 2,400 cases, including 1,100 cases against those violating traffic regulations. As a result of developments in police equipment and the acquisition of modern technology, the number of crimes has dropped to one third compared to 2010, In addition to traffic control, drones are being used to monitor areas that are difficult to access, They are also in use for revealing illegal migration at the southern borders, securing events, finding missing persons and illegal waste dumps, and crime scene investigation. 

There is no specific safety/security or defense-related trade show or annual event in Hungary.  Hungarian companies tend to visit trade events in Europe such as DSEI in London, UK, or the SHOT Show in the U.S. to establish new business contacts and gain insights into industry innovations.  There is a strong recommendation to U.S. companies to select a representative in the Hungarian market to succeed in public tenders and direct commercial sales. Given the small size of the Hungarian market, potential partner companies tend to ask for exclusive distributorship.  

Equipment with the greatest sales potential include:

•              Access Control and Video Systems 

•              Platform/sensor land border surveillance and detection systems

•              Automated home protection solutions

•              Screening and X-Ray systems for airports, customs, and public facilities (office buildings, logistic centers,   warehouses)

•              Drones

•              CCTVs, Security cameras for multiple functions such as retail shops, large facilities and public areas

•              Wireless security solutions

•             General security supplies (such as window foils, transportation security products, personal safety products)

Hungarian users have a high level of appreciation for innovative, sophisticated security products and solutions.  Strong after-sales service, maintenance, adequate and timely supply of spare parts and training are all essential to success.

U.S. Embassy - U.S. Commercial Service
Csilla Viragos, Commercial Specialist 
Budapest, Hungary 
Tel:  +36 1 475 4250