Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó is holding talks with the directors of several American enterprises in New York and Washington.

In a statement to Hungarian news agency MTI, the Minister said he had met with the directors of the world’s leading flavouring and fragrance producers. The company will be establishing its global financial service centre in Budapest, creating jobs for 160 highly qualified Hungarian employees, he announced.

According to Mr. Szijjártó, the corporation is one of the sector’s market leaders, employing a total of 7300 people, and recently acquired an Israeli company that already had Hungarian trade partners, meaning bringing the global financial service centre to Hungary will further reinforce the company’s presence in the country.

The step also further reinforces Hungary’s position on the service centre market in view of the fact that together with the new facility there will be over 110 service centres in Hungary, providing over 46 thousand Hungarians, usually young people with degrees who speak several languages, the opportunity to stay at home instead of seeking work abroad, he noted.

The Minister also told the press that a session of the United States-Hungary Business Council (USHBC), which is made up of 14 American corporations with interests in Hungary, will be convened on Wednesday. Thanks in part to their investments, U.S. corporations now represent the second largest investor community in Hungary: the 1700 enterprises operating here provide jobs to over 100 thousand Hungarians, he pointed out.

12 of the 76 companies who have concluded strategic partnership agreements with the Hungarian Government to date are also American, constituting the largest group from a single country. This number will be increasing by one on Friday in view of the fact that the Hungarian Foreign Minister will be meeting with the directors of ExxonMobil, which operates a service centre in Hungary that employs 1600 people, performing accounting, auditing and tax consultancy tasks for the company’s European, Middle Eastern and African activities.

Mr. Szijjártó reported on the fact that the company will be concluding a strategic partnership agreement with the Hungarian Government on Friday, which could play a significant role in Hungary’s future energy diversification in view of the fact that the company has the rights to extract Romanian Black Sea natural gas resources, and when gas production begins in a few years’ time it will mean a real, new energy procurement source for Hungary thanks to the fact that Hungarian enterprises have acquired future shipping capacities for the period 2022-2037.

The Minister also spoke about the fact that negotiations are also ongoing with the directors of Itron, which has become one of the global economy’s leading corporations in the new, smart age via the digitalisation of energy consumption metres. It is one of the world’s leading companies within the field of making energy consumption more efficient, and has established a research & development centre in Budapest, which is employing increasing numbers of young Hungarians, he explained.

Mr. Szijjártó said his delegation will also be meeting with the director of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) strategic, political and review section. “The Hungarian economy is in a state of dimensional change, and the global economy is also shifting from the tradition era into the innovative era”, he said.

In the Minister’s view, the Hungarian economy is extremely open, and accordingly is particularly affected by this shift in the global economy, but the Hungarian Government’s economic policy measures and the introduction of the lowest tax rates in Europe are enabling Hungary to achieve regular success in this transition to a new global economic era, in view of the fact that more and more corporations that play a leading role in the innovative era are choosing Hungary as the location for developing new and innovative technologies, he explained.

Negotiations are also ongoing on the possibility of one of the IMF’s institutions, the International Financial Corporation (IFC) renewing its cooperation with Hungary and on the establishment of a new asset management fund, thanks to which Hungary could acquire important foreign trade positions in several of the world’s countries, the Hungarian Foreign Minister told the press.

(Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister/MTI)