Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó and Azerbaijani Energy Minister Parviz Shahbazov held talks on energy supply over the phone on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Hungarian, Turkish agriculture ministers pledged to strengthen ties.
The war raging in Ukraine for half a year and the sanctions imposed in response have triggered a deep energy crisis in Europe, Szijjártó said on Facebook. Given the current situation, there is a pressing need for exploring and tapping new sources of energy, he said. From this aspect, Azerbaijan is the most important, even if not the only short- and medium-term partner to be included in Europe’s energy supply, the minister said, noting the recent EU-Azerbaijan energy agreement.
Highlighting the strategic nature of Hungarian-Azerbaijani relations, Szijjártó said Shahbazov had outlined an “excellent plan to generate a large amount of green electricity to be forwarded via Georgia and under the sea to Romania.
We have quickly agreed that Hungary will join this ambitious plan as for the project to be part-funded by the EU, at least two member states should be involved in it.”
The minister said that Hungary would partly use and partly transfer the green electricity provided by Azerbaijan. Szijjártó said the project could be implemented in three to four years. He said it would contribute to Hungary’s safe energy supply and help it achieve its carbon neutrality targets.
Opportunities in Turkish-Hungarian ties in agricultural policy should be boosted in sectors such as seed grain production, cattle imports and sweet-water fishery, Agriculture Minister István Nagy said on Wednesday.
Meeting Vahit Kirisci, his Turkish counterpart, at the International Apicultural Congress in Istanbul, Nagy highlighted the importance of apiculture in both countries, the ministry said in a statement. Turkey is the second largest honey producer in the world, and Hungary is one of the leading producers in the European Union, he said. Hungary is home to 1.2 million bee families, which play an essential ecological role in the country, he added.
Regarding bilateral economic ties, Nagy said the Hungarian-Turkish economic committees should work on identifying mutual focus points. One “bridge” between the countries would be boosting educational ties, he said. Turkey’s role as an important player in “feeding the world” has been highlighted during the war in Ukraine and the ensuing energy crisis, he said. Hungary and Turkey’s supplies, as well as global food security will suffer unless the conflict is ended swiftly, he said.
Nagy also thanked Turkey for its support for Budapest hosting an apicultural expo, the ministry said.