Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany has apologized for leaked comments in which he admitted lying about the state of Hungary's economy.

In the taped comments, made in May and leaked 10 days ago, the prime minister said the government had lied "morning, evening and night" and had done nothing for four years to rein in the deficit.  Those profanity-laced remarks have triggered protests in the capital and calls for the prime minister to quit.

Before a cabinet meeting in Budapest Wednesday, Mr. Gyurcsany said he recognizes he has lost the people's trust, and that it will take time to regain their confidence.

He also said he did not think when he made his comments that the Hungarian people would understand the need for sacrifices as his government tries to implement austerity measures.

Since winning April elections, the Gyurcsany government has passed tax hikes and cut a variety of subsidies to rein in one of the biggest deficits in Europe.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.