The government has approved the Hungarian military’s continued presence in the Baltic region, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said after visiting the Hungarian military contingent in Voru, in southeastern Estonia, on Friday.
As we wrote on July, the Hungarian contingent deployed to Estonia to participate in Exercise Training Bridge 2017, with personnel drawn mainly from the HDF 25th Klapka György Infantry Brigade (Tata) .
Tallinn has asked Hungary to use the Amari air base as the base of its NATO Baltic airspace protection mission, Szijjártó told MTI over the phone.
The 124-strong Hungarian contingent stationed in Estonia as part of NATO’s enhanced presence in the region is the first Hungarian Armed Forces unit to serve in the Baltic state, he said.
The Visegrad Group countries agreed last year to rotate their countries’ military presence in the region every three months, each supplying a company of troops, the minister said. The Hungarian contingent’s mission will consist of carrying out military exercises and training duties, he added.
In his meeting with the troops, Szijjártó expressed the government’s appreciation for their service.
“We are proud that our number of soldiers serving abroad in NATO and UN missions has reached 1,000 and we are particularly proud of those serving in Estonia,” Szijjártó said.
The minister is later scheduled to meet leaders of London-based Money transfer company TransferWise in Tallinn. Regarding his upcoming talks, Szijjártó said national economic competitiveness would depend on how quickly and effectively countries can link productivity with digitalisation.
Szijjártó underlined the importance of economic cooperation with Estonia, noting that it is among the world’s five best prepared countries for the new digital economy. He said the Budapest office of TransferWise will expand its staff to from 40 to 200.
Szijjártó is also scheduled to meet Estonia’s defence minister, the Estonian parliament’s first deputy speaker as well as the head of its foreign affairs committee.