Hungary’s foreign minister: China development instrumental to Europe
Budapest (MTI) – China’s development is a defining force in Europe, and Hungary views Sino-European cooperation as being of utmost importance, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó told Chinese news agency Xinhua on Tuesday.
Worldwide politics and economy have come to a turning point, “and in that turning point and after,” China will play “a great role,” Szijjártó said.
Hungary strongly hopes that the One Belt, One Road Initiative, a Chinese trade infrastructure programme, is to materialise in the form of concrete investment projects as China’s investments, and the export of European goods towards China, have an essential role for the continent’s future, Szijjártó said.
Current deficiencies in infrastructure make European goods less competitive on the Chinese market, the minister noted. “We expect that Chinese investments will appear in larger number in the future in the European area and when Chinese companies think about enlarging their European presence, we wish that they would think primarily of Hungary,” he added.
Szijjártó named the automotive industry as one of the areas with a potential to boost cooperation between the two countries, and said that the food industry could be the flagship sector of Hungarian exports to China.
Speaking of a project to create a transport corridor for Chinese goods bound for Europe, Szijjártó said that the planned upgrade of the Budapest-Belgrade railway’s “every single element conforms with the relevant EU regulations.”
The One Belt, One Road strategy aims to boost trade and economic integration between China and Eurasia through infrastructure development. The concept is centered on creating a New Silk Road linking China with Europe through Central and Western Asia, and a so-called 21st Century Maritime Silk Road linking China with Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Europe. The initiative encompasses regions with 60 percent of the world’s population and one third of the world’s economic output.