Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the government has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with French engineering giant Alstom.
At the signing ceremony in Budapest, Minister Szijjártó said Alstom could help to make Hungary “a local exception” in the face of an impending recession in Europe. Investor confidence and securing further international investment projects are key to maintaining economic growth amid the current economic crisis, the foreign ministry quoted Minister Szijjártó as saying. Alstom is a global market leader in train manufacturing, he said, noting that its plant in Mátranovák, in northern Hungary, is an important hub employing 650 people. Alstom is committed to expanding its activities and creating further jobs in Hungary, he added. Minister Szijjártó noted that Alstom built the world’s first hydrogen-powered train. Hydrogen, he added, would be a key component of energy security in the future, and offered further opportunities for cooperation. “Ensuring jobs for Hungarians and a predictable path to the future is a top priority for government economic policymaking in the current, extremely difficult situation,” the minister said.