The objective of the strategy chapter of the National Development Plan is to designate the development policy objectives and priorities for the 2004-2006-period that can be funded from the Structural Funds. However, this short three-year period is not sufficiently long to implement a comprehensive national development strategy, or deal with matters identified within the framework of Situation Analysis. This is why it is also necessary to lay down the pillars of long-term development policy spanning beyond the programming period that ends in 2006 in the present document, in addition to ensuring that the strategic framework for the following planning period is set up.

The ultimate and long-term goal of Hungarian development policy, and therefore NDP strategy, is to improve the quality of life of the population, which, beyond improving the income status, also covers the quality of the environment, health, education and social protection, as well as access to these. The general objective of the National Development Plan, namely to reduce development disparities existing between the European Union member states and Hungary was also set out within this particular strategic framework.