Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the Hungarian-Russian talks scheduled for today will focus on energy-related and economic issues that Hungary sees as a priority, such as expanding the long-term bilateral gas supply contract signed in September. “In the present situation, the greater the contract’s scope, the better for Hungary”, the minister said. The talks will also touch on progress in the upgrade of the Paks nuclear plant, food and space industry, and cooperation in air and railway transport, he said.
The twelfth such meeting between Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and Russian President Vladimir Putin today, will be “the most important yet, in view of the strained European situation,” Minister Szijjártó said. The minister said that settling tensions between Russia and the European Union through diplomatic means lies in Hungary’s strategic and security interest. “Historically, central Europe has always lost on conflicts between the West and the East,” he said. PM Orbán has already consulted French President Emmanuel Macron, who currently holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, he said.
Meanwhile, Minister Szijjártó noted that Hungarian-Russian economic cooperation saw its most successful year in 2021. “Plans are already at hand to make sure that in 2022 Hungarians will continue to benefit from the government’s foreign policy, which respects its commitments towards its allies but values successful bilateral ties with Russia and other countries,” he said. Simultaneously with the summit, which will start at noon central European time, Minister Szijjártó is scheduled to meet with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov.
Photo credit: Facebook/Szijjártó Péter