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Sep 01, 2020

FM: Central Europe is in a position to gain a big competitive advantage in the coming years

The foreign minister said the novel coronavirus pandemic presents a historic challenge for the European Union, adding, at the same time, that the coming years “could be all about central Europe”.

 

Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, has said the central European region is in a position to gain a big competitive advantage in the coming years.

Speaking on the sidelines of the 15th Bled Strategic Forum, in north-western Slovenia, the minister said the novel coronavirus pandemic presents a historic challenge for the European Union, adding, at the same time, that the coming years “could be all about central Europe”.

The controversial but “extremely sensible” economic and immigration policies pursued by the central European countries would give the region a competitive advantage in terms of security, political stability and economic growth “that could allow us to be more successful in the global economic competition than Europe on average,” he said.

According to MTI, the minister said the coronavirus has triggered fierce competition for a redistribution of global economic capacities, noting that the pandemic had forced leading multinational companies to close down many of their plants and service centers around the world. Future competition will be about attracting more investments and preserving jobs in the most effective way. Hungary is poised to enter that competition “with great self-confidence and a clear hope of success”, as a member of a central European cooperation.

As a result of its reasonable economic policy, including continued tax cuts, Hungary has become one of the most competitive investment locations in Europe, Minister Szijjártó said, adding that the country’s aim was to maintain a high rate of investments and attract an increasing number of investment projects by multinational companies. Talks “with excellent prospects” are under way with several potential investors, he said, pledging to announce concrete projects in the next months.

“Close cooperation with countries in central Europe will boost Hungary’s values and strength, and their success is also in Hungary’s interest,” Minister Szijjártó said, adding that he discussed this objective with his Polish, Croatian and Slovenian counterparts in Bled.

Photo credit: MTI/Borsos Mátyás