Speaking in Palić, in northern Serbia, on Tuesday, Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, has announced that an agreement has been signed on building a new oil pipeline between Hungary and Serbia, and a regional JV natural gas trading company will be set by MVM and Srbijagas. Both with a view to boosting energy security.
Minister Szijjártó told a Hungary-Serbia strategic council meeting that the construction of the new pipeline to link Algyő with Novi Sad (Újvidék) was perhaps the most important agreement between the two countries ever. He added that the new regional natural gas trading company of MVM and Srbijagas would start operations in the autumn. “The more resources, the more routes and the more cooperation, the greater energy security,” he said. “Hungary’s energy security would be unimaginable today without Serbia, and the same is true the other way around,” he said. “The majority of Hungary’s natural gas supplies arrive through Serbia and we keep in storage over a hundred million cubic metres on behalf of Serbia,” he added. He told the strategic council that Europe’s “most modern, largest and most gleaming border crossing” will be established between Röszke and Horgos, adding that it would be one of the largest joint projects of all time.
Minister Szijjártó said cooperation could also enter a new dimension in foreign policy, with Hungary signing an agreement on setting up a joint foreign representative office with another country for the first time, enabling the expansion of the diplomatic network for both countries. Serbia’s embassy in Kinshasa in Congo will host the Hungarian representation and Hungary’s embassy in Valletta in Malta will host Serbia’s mission, he said. The programme will be continued in order to have representation most effectively in most places around the world, he added. Minister Szijjártó also said that economic cooperation had broken several records, citing investments by Hungarian companies in Serbia, trade reaching 6 billion euros last year, and an economic development programme for Vojvodina which supported 14,200 companies with a total of 171 billion forints (EUR 190m ) last year. Several contracts are scheduled to be signed at the meeting, including a declaration of intent on building a new oil pipeline between the two countries, an agreement on the exchange and protection of certified data, a cooperation agreement on the policing of foreigners and an agreement on the opening of a joint representation office in Kinshasa. Additionally, the agreements on border controls on public roads, railways and waterways will be amended.