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Beijing Supports Bilateral Expansion of Economic Relations

MTI-Hungary Today 2024.07.08.
A factory of China’s battery manufacturer CATL

Economic, trade and investment cooperation between Hungary and China will continue to provide a solid basis for economic growth in the coming years, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in Beijing on Monday.

The minister welcomed the fact that Chinese state leaders support the further development of economic cooperation between the two countries and that “Chinese companies, creating tens of thousands of jobs at the cutting edge of technology and leading the automotive revolution, will continue to bring their investments to Hungary.”

The Chinese leaders are in favor of attracting more Chinese tourists to Hungary, and they are also in favor of bringing more Hungarian food products to the Chinese market,”

he continued.

The minister underlined that Chinese companies are currently investing HUF 6,400 billion (EUR 16.3 billion) in Hungary, directly creating some 25,000 new jobs and making Hungary a center of the global automotive revolution and technological innovation.

Hungarian-Chinese trade flows over the years. Red: Imports from China (in billion forints) / Green: Exports to China (in billion forints) Source: MTI

Mr Szijjártó said that these major investments in the automotive sector will guarantee the rapid growth of the Hungarian economy in the years to come. He also welcomed the fact that from the summer, twenty-one direct flights a week will now connect Budapest with seven Chinese cities.

The minister noted that Hungary has the largest number of Chinese export licenses for food and agricultural products among the Central European countries, and that “new agreements are being drawn up, and we are also negotiating an agreement to allow the export of pork and poultry meat again, with only the technical details to be negotiated,” he added. “All in all, it can be said that Hungarian-Chinese economic, trade and investment cooperation will continue to provide a solid basis for the growth of the Hungarian economy in the coming years,” he concluded.

On Sunday, the Hungarian foreign minister received Robin Zeng, founding chairman of CATL, the world’s leading manufacturer of electric batteries, in Budapest. After the meeting, Péter Szijjártó said that the global automotive industry is undergoing a huge technological revolution, of which the Chinese company is one of the most prominent players.

Hungary will continue to do its utmost to avoid a trade war with China during its EU Presidency, as this would be very damaging for the continent,”

he noted.

The government made the right strategic choice when it decided to locate the main European cooperation center for eastern and western car manufacturers in Hungary, he said, adding that the most important German, Chinese and South Korean companies in the sector are also set up in the country.

China’s CATL is currently building a factory in Debrecen (eastern Hungary), where “major infrastructure developments are also under way,” the minister said. In this context, he pointed out that it was good news that the first unit of the company’s factory was inaugurated at the end of last month.

Mr Szijjártó noted that the building covers 40,000 square meters, of which 9,000 square meters are for production and 30,000 square meters for warehousing and office back-up functions. “Two production lines will be located here, the first two production lines, which will enable trial production to start early next year,” he said.

László Papp, the mayor of Debrecen, shared the news on Facebook a few days ago that

CATL is switching cooling technology and significantly reducing water use, using mainly purified wastewater.

“Over the past year, we have been in continuous discussions with representatives of CATL in order to achieve positive changes in all the issues that have been of major concern to the community of Debrecen,” he wrote in his post. “Today we have reached another milestone. CATL has submitted a modification application to the government office that will result in a reduction of the solvent NMP emissions to minimal levels.” He added: “Energy efficiency will be improved by the fact that there will be no gas use in the property they lease, either for the activities they carry out there or for heating the building.”

Battery Industry Accounts for 5.5 percent of the Country's GDP
Battery Industry Accounts for 5.5 percent of the Country's GDP

Hungary exports EUR 10 billion worth of batteries and related products annually.Continue reading

Via MTI, Featured image: Twitter/CATL

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