“Hungary is building on the extremely strong relations it is maintaining with the United States, including the results of the May meeting between Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and U.S. President Donald Trump, and on the success stories of American corporations that have established subsidiaries in Hungary”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó declared on Monday in Washington at a conference on opportunities for reinforcing transatlantic relations at the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA).

At a roundtable discussion with representatives from the governments of the Visegrád Group (V4) countries, the Minister added: “The United States has also played a role in enabling Hungary to achieve the highest rate of economic growth in the European Union”, He spoke about the fact that, as also determined at the May summit, there are many joint points in the politics of Washington and Budapest. “Both regard protecting their own citizens and their country as their most important task, in addition to which they are both retaining the right to decide who can enter their country and who they want to coexist with. Both countries are also making a significant effort to protect their borders”, Mr. Szijjártó explained. In reply to a question, the Minister declared that Hungary respects the common values professed by the European Union. As he explained, the Hungarian Government has always based its foreign policy on mutual respect. “In the new world order, the national interests of every country must be respected, and this is also the expectation with relation to Hungary”, he highlighted. He emphasised that the improvement of East-West cooperation in the interests of all of Europe. As he explained, the role of the Central and Eastern European region in international cooperation, and therefore also in transatlantic relations, was also a topic of discussion at the Orbán-Trump meeting. Both countries regard it as important to raise their voices against the persecution of Christian communities in many conflict zones, he pointed out.

Vice President of CEPA and Chair of the panel discussion Edward Lucas highlighted the fact that the US-Hungary summit brought results that are important to the whole Central European region. In reply to a question, Mr. Szijjártó said that despite the international sanctions against Moscow, several western countries have increased their trade with Russia. “With relation to the diversification of natural gas procurement, EU and American partners are yet to provide assistance with the creation of alternatives”, he said. The Hungarian Foreign Minister also mentioned the Three Seas Initiative, the goal of which is the realisation of joint infrastructure development projects in the Baltic, Adriatic and Black Sea regions, in line with European Union strategy. He emphasised that this cooperation will primarily only be effective if the nice words are followed by deeds. With relation to Ukraine, Mr. Szijjártó said Hungary is looking with hope towards cooperation with the new Ukrainian President, but is expecting action from Kiev. “The previous Ukrainian administration stripped the Hungarian minority of several rights, including the right to use their native language”, he added. He underlined that the Hungarian Government is not asking for them to be afforded additional rights, only that their previously acquired rights be returned.