Budapest, August 16 (MTI) – Hungary’s cultural Balassi Institute will be wound up effective August 31 and merged into the foreign ministry as its legal successor, the official gazette Magyar Közlöny reported on Tuesday.
In line with a government decision on cultural and science diplomacy, the ministers in charge of foreign affairs and culture will operate an 11-member consultative body to decide on the strategic directions of cultural diplomacy and improve its efficiency. The body will make proposals on the long-term tasks and means to promote Hungarian culture abroad, according to Magyar Közlöny .
At a July 6 meeting with heads of Hungarian institutes abroad, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said the Balassi Institute would continue functioning under the auspices of the foreign ministry with the same staff numbers as at present.
In line with the government decision published on Tuesday, the government will launch a Balassi Bálint scholarship scheme to support training and research in Hungarology, Hungarian language and cultural studies and to encourage developments in the field.
The Balassi Institute, set up to oversee the operation of Hungarian cultural institutes around the world, has organised several language courses and has been responsible for disbursing scholarships. The institute has been present in 24 cities such as New York, New Delhi, Cairo, Helsinki, London and Warsaw.