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Association of Hungarian Translation Companies (MFE)

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MFE was established on 13 September 1994 with the following objectives in mind: Trade and business federation of translation companies, raising the translation and interpreting activities to a higher level and increased public recognition. With special emphasis on:

  • Encouraging clients to request the services of translation companies for solving their translation problems
  • Protecting the interests of translation companies by all legal means
  • Organizing company cooperation, forum for exchanging ideas
  • Participation in the training and further training of translators and interpreters
  • Providing information to companies, translators and interpreters about the latest trends and helpful techniques within the trade
  • Distribution of up-to-date translating methods among members of the association
  • Lobbying for legislation in order to be more up-to-date and efficient in our work
  • Laying the grounds for and supporting high-quality translation services
  • Promoting the signing of liability insurance for services
  • Contributing to the operation of the translation industry under the conditions of a free market.

In recent years the MFE has built a sound foundation. It strengthened its membership in both quantity and quality. The aggregated sales of members were over one billion forints as early as in 2000 and reached 1.5 billion forints in 2002. With a few exceptions, the largest and most respected companies have joined our association, which became known and recognized in Hungary and abroad, as well as becoming an active participant in the work of European Union Association of Translation Companies (EUATC).

In the years following our establishment we have developed our fundamental professional guidelines:

  • The Code of Conduct, which provides each member with a uniform policy of code of ethics

  • The Standard Terms and Conditions, which consists recommendations to assist members in creating their own business policies, as well as a uniform marketing conduct

  • A recommendation concerning price lists in terms of content and form, and a resolution of cost per volume unit that would also be part of the uniform marketing conduct

  • A policy of arbitration between members and subcontractors

  • A policy to resolve conflicts between members and clients

  • A recommendation concerning business relations between members and their contracted translators/interpreters

  • A recommendation concerning translation services provided on location

  • A recommendation with regards to minimum charges

  • A recommendation for sub-contractor's contract for translation duties

  • A recommendation for language and urgency categories.

We have prepared and published professional and information materials that have helped to boost our recognition and also to improve relationships between members and clients. (Professional advice to organizations on how to conduct a tender procedure as well as a guide for clients on how to arrange an order for translation and interpretation services).

At the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Education we have initiated amendments to the 24/1986 (VI. 26.) MT Decree of the Council of Ministers On Translation and Interpretation, the 7/1986 (VI. 26.) IM Decree of the Minister of Justice On the Implementation of 24/1986 (VI. 26.) MT Decree, and the 7/1986. (VI. 36.) MM decree of the Minister of Culture On the Qualification Requirements for Translators and Interpreters.

We have addressed a petition to the Court of Constitution and the Ministry of Justice in an effort to change the current situation regarding the authentication of translations in Hungary. The ruling of the Court was announced in our Newsletter.

We have actively and continuously participated in the work of EUATC to incorporate and coordinate the activities of associations from various countries, to improve their line of business, to help set standards, to conduct surveys, to gather and distribute information, and the business federation of members at European and other international organizations. The EUATC has prepared its code of ethics and quality standards. The MFE had an active part in the preparation of quality standards and used it to implement it into its own standards.

Four times a year we publish our Newsletter in which we inform our members and other translation companies about new trends and news in the business. The number of organizations (i.e. educational institutions that provide translator and/or interpreter training) and translation companies that receive our Newsletter has increased. We have published a special edition of the Newsletter, in which the best and most interesting articles of previous editions can be found.

We regularly publish the Association's Yearbook, which includes not only data regarding our members but also helpful information for our clients and guidance for better collaboration between members and their clients. The special edition of the Newsletter, the Yearbook and Guide were delivered to approximately 500 potential clients and organizations.

We have created our own web site on the Internet where we publish important data about our members with direct links to their web sites. This web site includes all that the association has to offer, as well as an archive of Newsletters.

We have prepared two surveys on the Hungarian translation market. In spite of limited information it is adequate to draw cautious conclusions nevertheless.

In two foreign trade journals (Language International, International Journal for Language and Documentation) two articles were published about our association.

Our association is also known and recognized by outside organizations. We have, for instance, participated in the evaluation stage of a public procurement tender and have been asked to provide an expert opinion in a court case between a translation company and its client. We have translated the DIN 2345 standard into Hungarian. This was used by the FTK trainees in their own work, which then was published in the "Science of Translation" journal's first issue in 1999 and in the "Translation and Interpretation around the World", a tutorial published by the Center for Translator and Interpreter Training at the Eötvös Loránd University of Science Faculty of Humanities.

The most significant work of the Association was the development of a quality assurance system. This work has started in 1997 by an ad hoc committee and continued in 1998 by three members of the directors. As a resource, these committees used the DIN 2345 and ISO 9000/9004 standards and the documents of the Association of Dutch Translation Companies and of the EUATC quality assurance system. During this work we have followed EUATC procedures in order to approximate our system for conformity with EU standards. Following the Netherlands, Hungary is the second country in Europe where a recognized quality assurance system is available to smaller translation companies.
In the year 2000 a quality assurance standard and a handbook was written containing features, which are unique to the Hungarian market. These standards specify the conditions on which to qualify for the "Certified Company" title. Out of the 16 companies that applied for this certification two ones have already been certified. In the past couple of years our clients have become more quality oriented, in fact in some cases potential orders are made conditional upon the quality assurance certification. By developing such programs, translation companies can provide better services to further improve customer satisfaction. We are confident that this certification program will assure a more favorable opinion of our members and the association.

Better cooperation and interaction among our member companies proves the usefulness and necessity of our association. Two consortiums, who have been successful in winning tenders (translating the EU legislation into Hungarian) were formed by member participation, and some of our members themselves have been successful in winning various tenders.

Officers of the association

President: László Reha
Members of the Board: László Végsö
Board of Supervisors: Lóránt Akáb László Nagyvári, president
Members of the Ethics Committee: Miklós Bán Annette Hemera, president

Further information about MFE

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