Hungary and Bavaria sign new three-year cooperation programme
Melanie Huml, the Bavarian State Minister for European and International Affairs, has met with Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto in Budapest.
Hungary and Bavaria have signed another three-year cooperation programme, which is aimed at preserving their shared economic achievements in the current, extremely challenging period, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said at a press conference following the meeting of the Hungarian-Bavarian Mixed Committee on Thursday, the Hungarian state news agency (MTI) reports.
“Dramatic changes are taking place in global politics and the global economy, and in such a situation stable, predictable and reliable partners are particularly valuable,” Mr Szijjarto stressed at the joint press conference with Bavarian State Minister without portfolio for European and International Affairs Melanie Huml.
Mr Szijjarto added that Bavaria is Hungary’s number one trading partner among the German federal states, and the second largest investor in Hungary. Roughly one third of Hungary’s export to Germany go to Bavaria, and bilateral trade turnover reached 15 billion euros last year. The Hungarian government has also signed strategic cooperation agreements with six Bavarian companies in recent years, he said.
“Hard times will always reveal true friends,” and Bavarian companies proved their loyalty during the coronavirus pandemic, FM Szijjarto said, adding that despite the difficulties, 26 companies invested a total of 28 billion forints in Hungary, thus helping to protect 12 300 jobs.
Peter Szijjarto said that the Hungarian-Bavarian cooperation had always been based on mutual respect and aimed at gaining mutual advantages. The two states also share the goal of preserving their existing economic achievements in the current “difficult environment plagued by war and inflation”.
He underlined that Hungary offered the most competitive investment environment in Europe, with the lowest taxes and a stable energy supply.
The minister emphasized that the government considered it important to uphold European unity regarding the war in Ukraine, but it had to fight for Hungary’s energy security, as the Hungarian economy would be unable to function without Russian energy. For Hungary, he added, this is not an “ideological issue, but a rational and physical one”, and the government does everything it can to prevent any danger to the country’s energy supply.
Peter Szijjarto noted that Hungary and Bavaria have signed a new three-year cooperation programme covering 51 areas, including the joint financing of the German-language Andrassy University Budapest and the Hungarian Institute at the University of Regensburg, and cooperating in the field of renewable energy.
Asked about relations between the Hungarian government and the new German government that took office last year, Peter Szijjarto said that bilateral ties have never been determined by which political parties are in power, adding that Hungary have always respected election outcomes in other countries and worked together with the politicians elected by the people.