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Jun 26, 2018

FM: It is in Hungary’s interest that a thorough and comprehensive free trade agreement is signed between the EU and Britain

The foreign minister said Hungary’s government believes that a fair Brexit will also involve the protection of the rights of Hungarian citizens living, working and studying in Britain

The foreign minister has said Hungary and the European Union’s interests would best be served by the conclusion of an agreement between the EU and Britain at the end of their divorce talks.

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, attended a forum in London on Monday introducing stock exchange heads from the Visegrád Group countries of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia held at the London Stock Exchange.

The minister is also scheduled to hold bilateral talks with Secretary of State for Defence Gavin Williamson.

The foreign minister said Hungary believes it is especially important to maintain security cooperation with Britain, considering that the EU is facing serious security challenges and Britain’s intelligence-defense capacities should not be disregarded in this respect. “Europe cannot afford to not utilize these capacities,” he said.

Minister Szijjártó said Britain directly participates in 12 of the 15 foreign EU missions carried out under the auspices of the common security and defense policy and if London withdraws from these, the missions will either discontinue or their capacities will drop drastically.

He added that the British are present in a number of international missions that are important for Hungary, including in the Western Balkans.

British and Hungarian soldiers participated in several exercises jointly in the past and Hungary would like to continue this cooperation, he said.

According to MTI, it is also in Hungary’s interest that a thorough and comprehensive free trade agreement is signed between the EU and Britain as a result of the Brexit talks.

Hungary’s position is that a fair Brexit will result in economic cooperation that regulates bilateral trade in line with a free trade agreement and not according to the general rules of WTO.

The minister said Hungary’s government believes that a fair Brexit will also involve the protection of the rights of Hungarian citizens living, working and studying in Britain.