Washington, DC, May 10 (MTI) – Hungarian-US relations are built on a solid foundation, and although the two countries may have their disagreements, economic ties are excellent, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said in New York on Monday.
Szijjártó is on a two-day visit in New York and will address Tuesday’s meeting of the UN General Assembly focusing on peace and security.
Giving a lecture at the Harvard Club of New York about Hungary-US relations, the minister said that occasional disputes have not hampered the two countries’ cooperation within the transatlantic alliance.
Szijjártó said Europe has not faced as many challenges as it does today since the second world war and listed the Ukraine conflict, energy policy questions, migration and the growing threat of terrorism as the four main issues.
Hungary’s responses to these challenges have been successful and patriotic, which means the country is now no longer part of the problem but that of the solution, the minister said. Hungary has demonstrated that the European Union can only be successful with strong member states, he said, adding that the government would not have succeeded without the overwhelming support it had received from voters.
Szijjártó said the US often criticised Hungary but insisted that his country is always prepared to discuss concrete criticism.
The minister pointed out that some 1,600 US-based companies have invested 9 billion dollars in Hungary. If Hungary were really as bad a place as some of its critics claim, then American companies would not want to invest there, he said.
Szijjártó noted that Hungary has hundreds of soldiers posted around the world, many of them serving under US command. Hungary is among the 23 countries participating in the US-led international coalition fighting the Islamic State militant group. “What could possibly be a better demonstration of our solidarity, reliability and predictability than this?”
After the lecture, Szijjártó met leaders of Hungarian startup businesses with a footing on the US market.