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If I understand you correctly, it might just be a strategic policy decision.
In the case of Hungary and other such countries, it might be about adopting a market approach recognizing they also need people who speak sign-languages to communicate effectively with the deaf, Latin for historians and archaeologists, English for major multinational companies and international radio communication, German to trade with smaller German businesses that might not have access to English, Esperanto for those lacking the necessary aptitude to learn a more difficult language, dyslexics who want to learn to read and the blind who want to learn to pronounce an easier language and possibly to develop the Esperanto cultural industry or for import-export and tourism between Esperanto-speaking companies, etc. In short, they might perceive second-language instruction policy as part of overall public policy.
The Chinese approach and that of former British colonies might be more related to using English-language exams as a gateway to higher education and international communication, promoting closer diplomatic and cultural ties with English-speaking countries specifically (the USA is just across the Pacific from China after all), etc. It can also promote more employment opportunities for English-speaking Chinese as public school English teachers by eliminating competition from sign-languages and other languages, and also promotes the English-language industry overall by promoting the sale of English-language textbooks and making business in China easier for foreigners who speak English compared to other foreign languages so as to help promote English beyond China's borders too.
Though I lean towards the Hungarian model, I acknowledge that it might just be a cultural difference and that the Chinese approach has its own advantages too, especially in building closer ties with English-speaking countries and some former British and US colonies too, which has its own undeniable advantages too.