Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told guests at a bilateral business forum organized by the Hungarian National Trading House (MNKH) that Hungary wants to improve economic ties with Egypt.
The prime minister welcomed Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi in Budapest on Monday, where the pair discussed Hungarian-Egyptian relations, and building bilateral and economic partnerships.
“We are now holding our third business forum and … so far we have not made any major breakthroughs in the two countries’ economic relations,” PM Orbán said.
The prime minister pointed out that Hungary and Egypt have built a trusting political relationship, which he said was a “good starting point for achieving a major economic breakthrough” through a “wave of projects”.
PM Orbán also said that although Hungary only has a population of 10 million, it exports 110 billion USD worth of goods a year.
The prime minister said Hungary had developed a “flexible and supportive” policy and approach toward Egypt. “We understand Egyptians’ view that rejects meddling in their internal affairs,” PM Orban said.
He suggested that the EU should apply a more constructive approach to the North African country. “What I will add to this today is that if a destabilized Syria caused the kinds of problems for Europe that it did, how big would the problems be that would result from an Egypt growing unstable without President al-Sisi leading it,” PM Orbán said.
“In order to address the migration crisis we must also conclude a comprehensive agreement with Egypt like the ones we have signed with other countries in the region,” he added.
The prime minister said Europe should speak of Egypt and its president with respect and called al-Sisi a “historic figure” for his role in stabilizing his country.