The foreign minister has revealed that a joint Hungary-US fund supporting small and medium-sized firms in the US export market has been established.
Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said Hungary has “outstanding economic growth” compared with the rest of the European Union.
Minister Szijjártó told MTI that Hungary is close to full employment and the public debt has been declining steadily. He added that Hungary has produced successive export records over the past five years and is now among 35 countries to have exported more than 100 billion euros each year.
The minister highlighted that outside of the EU, the United States is Hungary’s number one export market. Notwithstanding Hungary’s great potential there, the US is an extremely tricky market to negotiate, he said. Despite this, Hungary exported USD 3.5 billion worth to the US last year, up an annual 11 percent.
“The potential in helping SMEs that develop high-tech innovations to enter the American market is huge,” the minister said. However, high costs and barriers to local know-how have hindered them.
Therefore, Eximbank has established a HUF 10 billion fund (EUR 30m), the Columbus Fund, with 7 billion of its own resources and 3 billion from private sources with a view to providing capital to Hungarian SMEs involved mainly in infocommunications, health technology and agricultural innovation. “We expect the Columbus Fund will help Hungarian businesses succeed in the US market and boost Hungary’s export performance,” the minister said.
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