Budapest, May 8 (MTI) – Péter Szijjártó, the minister of foreign affairs and trade, on Monday held talks with Austrian Finance Minister Hans Joerg Schelling in Budapest, discussing, among others, bilateral trade ties, the foreign ministry said.
In their talks, the two ministers were in agreement that the undisturbed functioning of the passport-free Schengen zone was crucial for improving the European Union’s competitiveness. This, however, is dependent on the protection of the EU’s external borders, they said.
Szijjártó assured Schelling that Hungary would continue to fulfil its Schengen obligations.
The ministry stressed the importance of the continuous development of Hungary’s economic and trade ties with Austria, noting that the country was Hungary’s second largest trading partner last year. Bilateral trade turnover between the two countries could reach 10 billion euros by the end of 2017, the ministry said. Some 3,000 Austrian companies are present in Hungary employing 70,000 people, they added.