“We have performed all of the political work necessary to assure the success of Hungarian companies on the Georgian market, no open political issues remain between Hungary and Georgia”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in Tbilisi following talks with Georgian leaders.
Mr. Szijjártó met with his Georgian counterpart Mikheil Janelidze, and was also received by Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, Speaker of Parliament Irakli Kobakhidze and President Giorgi Margvelashvili. The Hungarian Foreign Minister also concluded an agreement with President of the Georgian Red Cross Natia Loladze.
Mr. Szijjártó stressed that Hungary is a strong supporter of Georgia’s invitation to join NATO and the acceleration of its integration into the European Union in view of the fact that the need for peace in Georgia’s wider vicinity, in which there are several frozen conflicts, is extremely important from the point of view of European security. Hungary also strongly supports plans to afford Georgian citizens visa-free travel into the European Union at the end of March. “Hungary is maintaining its presence in the EU’s Monitoring Mission in Georgia with 11 staff; six police officers and five military delegates”, he added.
“Water management will play the most important role in Hungarian-Georgian economic cooperation, and especially the management of the water systems of Georgian cities”, he continued. A second area of cooperation is Georgian demand for Hungarian food industry and agricultural, primarily cold storage technologies. As a third possible area of cooperation the Minister mentioned that in the upcoming years 4 billion euros will be spent on developing Georgian infrastructure, mainly within the fields of energy, transport and sport. “The Hungarian Government is facilitating the involvement of Hungarian companies in these development projects through having opened an 85 million euro credit line at its export-import bank, Eximbank, the goal of which it to enable Hungarian companies to appear on the Georgian market with competitive offers”, Mr. Szijjártó said, noting that the presence of Hungarian companies can already be called significant and pharmaceuticals exports had, for instance, already exceeded 25 million dollars-a-year.
The Hungarian Foreign Minister also said that the two countries has concluded a university scholarship agreement within the framework of which the Hungarian Government would be providing 50 scholarship places for Georgian students to study in Hungary, for which there are already 139 applications.
Mr. Szijjártó also told the press that in Friday an agreement had been signed according to which Hungary would be donating 10 million forints to the Georgian Red Cross to help mitigate the results of flood damage. The organisation will be using the money to supply food aid packages and operate a psychiatric help centre.
(Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister/MTI)