PM Orbán: We see Brazil as a country of great opportunities

At the invitation of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro arrived in Budapest this morning. Following their bilateral meeting, which included the signing of three agreements, the leaders held a joint press conference.

“Today something has happened that has never happened before, as the President of Brazil has never visited Hungary,” Prime Minister Orbán began his brief press statement, before expressing his condolences to President Bolsonaro for the victims of recent natural disasters in Brazil.

President Bolsonaro had arrived in Hungary from Moscow. “The possibility of war is overshadowing our days,” PM Orbán said, adding that all efforts to preserve peace are in Hungary's interests. “Although Brazil is not a member of NATO, it is a cooperative military partner,” the PM said, thanking the Brazilian President for his efforts to preserve peace.

Among the bilateral agreements, the first is a memorandum of understanding on mutual defense between the Brazilian Ministry of Defence and the Hungarian Defence Forces. The second agreement is aimed at strengthening humanitarian cooperation between Hungary and Brazil, while under the third agreement, Hungary and Brazil signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the field of water management.

Switching the focus of the press conference to economic cooperation, PM Orbán noted that Brazil is the 12th largest economy in the world, therefore it is in Hungary’s national interest to maintain good relations. The two countries share a common approach to the world's major global issues, PM Orbán said, adding that the two countries agree that migration is a negative phenomenon.

Free trade is vital for Hungary, as our exports account for 70 percent of GDP, PM Orbán said.

“We see Brazil as a country of great opportunities,” he said, mentioning investments in biotechnology and that the Hungarian pharmaceutical company Richter is already present in Brazil.

PM Orbán said higher education cooperation with Brazil is another huge opportunity, as Hungarian higher education is world class. He then recalled that he had attended President Bolsonaro's inauguration and expressed the hope that there would be more opportunities like this.