“Both countries clearly profit from Hungarian-Croatian economic cooperation, but there are areas in which more rapid progress could be made”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in a statement to public media in Zagreb on Monday.

Mr. Szijjártó, who is part of the delegation accompanying Prime Minister Viktor Orbán on his official visit to Zagreb, explained: “Last year, trade flow exceeded 2 billion euros, and in the interests of maintaining this momentum Eximbank has opened a 420-million-euro credit line for Hungarian enterprises wishing to invest in Croatia”.

“An agreement was reached on the fact that joint Croatian-Hungarian tourism programmes will be organised in Chinese-Croatian-Hungarian triple cooperation for Chinese tourists visiting Central Europe, which programmes will be concentrating on Budapest in Hungary, and on the coastline in Croatia”, he continued.

Mr. Szijjártó also reported on the fact that following half a billion forints (EUR 1.5 million) in funding each both last year and this year, a budget of one billion forints is being earmarked for the Drávaszög region economic development programme next year, and will be funding agricultural and business development projects.

He also highlighted the fact that through the acquisition of a Croatian bank, Hungarian banking giant OTP became the fourth largest player in the Croatian banking sector a few days ago.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade also called for an increase in the number of border crossing points in view of the fact that there are currently only seven border crossing opportunities along the 335-kilometre Hungarian-Croatian border, which represents a major competitive disadvantage.

In the interests of handling this problem, Hungary has recommended to Croatia that further border crossing points be opened from 2021 after the M6 motorway reaches the Croatian border. “We have recommended that we make the railway bridge at Murakeresztúr suitable for also bearing road traffic, and that we also open a border crossing point at Sárok”, he added.

(Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister/MTI)