Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said at the annual Tranzit conference that in the current era of crises and dangers, the question is whether Hungary can protect itself, not only in physical terms but also economically and in terms of values.
According to MTI, the minister said there were six sources of danger, including the danger of physical security, economic danger, energy supply problems, the strengthening of migration resulting from supply difficulties, the poor continental and global responses to the war and political blackmail. Hungary will be successful because “we are world champions in economic crisis management”, he said. The country has and will have enough energy needed for its normal operation and the normal operation of its economy, it pursues a foreign policy based on national interests as against dictates from centres of power, and the government enjoys political stability, resulting in “political courage”, the foreign minister said.
The coronavirus pandemic caused recession around the world in 2021, yet Hungary’s economy had its most successful year since the fall of communism, with economic growth of over 7%, 4.7 million people holding a job, 119 billion euros worth of exports and investments totalling 1,886 billion forints (EUR 4.6bn), Szijjártó said.
It has become clear that for the country to have sufficient energy supplies, it needs energy sources and transport routes, he said. When a continent’s annual natural gas consumption of 400 billion cubic metres includes 170 billion cubic metres coming from a single geographical location, it is impossible to replace within a few years, he added. Szijjártó said that Hungary’s sole nuclear power plant at Paks had received an implementation licence for an expansion a few days before, adding that in line with European regulations nuclear energy is not affected by sanctions.
The world is not only made up of North America and Europe, he said. Hungary’s foreign policy based on mutual respect has been met with respect in a large part of the world as a result of which its sphere of manoeuvring is continually expanding, Szijjártó added. A right-wing change is expected at the parliamentary election in Italy and also at the midterm elections in the United States, he said. Throughout Europe, parties that pursue policies based on national values, tax cuts and family support are increasingly popular, the foreign minister said.
Photo credit: MTI