Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó held talks with Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto and Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister Marijana Nikolova on the sidelines of a conference on Ukrainian reform processes in Toronto, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said in a statement to Hungarian news agency MTI.

According to the Ministry’s statement, the Hungarian and Finnish foreign ministers confirmed that the two countries and two peoples are linked by a bond of friendship, as also proven by the 54 twin city relations. The foreign ministers also reinforced the cooperation of the two countries within the United Nations. Hungary is supporting Finland’s bid for non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council. According to the statement, Mr. Szijjártó emphasised that Finnish-Hungarian economic cooperation is playing a major role in the success of the dimensional transition of the Hungarian economy in view of the fact that one of the largest research & development & innovation centres in Hungary is operated by Nokia within the field of information technology.

Both countries are planning to give nuclear power plants a major role in future. There are currently two nuclear power plant projects ongoing in Finland, in view of which cooperation between the two countries is close with relation to operational safety and training courses. In addition, several Finnish nuclear enterprises are showing heightened interest in participating in the Paks Nuclear Power Plant expansion project, the Minister added.

With relation to his meeting with Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister Marijana Nikolova, Péter Szijjártó said that economic relations between Hungary and Bulgaria are regularly breaking records, with bilateral trade flow between the two countries now exceeding 1.5 billion euros.

Mr. Szijjártó added that the continuous presence of some of the largest Hungarian corporations on the Bulgarian market is undoubtedly playing an important role in this. With the purchase of Societe Generale, Hungary’s OTP Group has become one of the largest stakeholders on the Bulgarian banking market, while Hungarian pharmaceuticals manufacturer Richter is realising 5 billion forints (EUR 15.5 million) in annual turnover on the Bulgarian market, the Minister highlighted.

(Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade/MTI)