Bratislava (Pozsony) (MTI) – Foreign ministers of the Visegrad Four countries met in Bratislava on Thursday to discuss the situation in Ukraine, the challenges faced by the EU and the EU-US free trade agreement.
Issuing a joint statement, the participants took a stand for the territorial integrity and independence of Ukraine, Peter Szijjarto, the Hungarian minister, told MTI.
The ministers agreed that the international community should as soon as possible develop a plan for how to contribute to the creation of a politically and economically sustainable Ukraine, he said.
The participants also agreed on the need of immediate steps to regain the EU’s competitiveness, Szijjarto said.
“Europe will only become competitive again if it restores the prestige of work and family,” he said.
Another issue on the agenda was the free trade agreement to be signed between the US and the EU, he added.
“I made it clear that Hungary’s position is that this agreement needs to be approved also by the national parliaments,” he said. It is in Hungary’s interest that an “ambitious” agreement is achieved but it must not endanger Hungary’s achievements, such as its GMO-free status. He said he pointed out to his negotiating partners that the agreement could also be used to increase Europe’s energy security if the EU were to lift restrictions on the export of liquid gas.
Photo: MTI/Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade – Marton Kovacs