Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó (left) with British counterpart James Cleverly
Brussels often reacts “out of anger” to British objections, and some decisions tend to hamper cooperation between the European Union and the United Kingdom. At the same time, in the current difficult situation it is paramount to have good relations, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in London on Monday.
Following his talks with his newly appointed British counterpart James Cleverly, the Hungarian minister described Britain’s departure from the EU as a huge loss, and said that the damage should be minimized somehow, which would require reasonable cooperation based on mutual respect.
Péter Szijjártó added that
in the current situation, when the economic competitiveness of the European Union has suffered a lot, this is a very wrong course of action, because close cooperation with the UK would help the EU to be stronger and more competitive.”
In the current international situation, he warned, it is explicitly against the interests of the European Union and Hungary to maintain disputes with the United Kingdom.
The minister said that the war in Ukraine was also a topic at the meeting: “We understand if there are other considerations a few hundred or even thousands of kilometers away from the war conflict, but we who live in the neighborhood of the war are interested in peace as soon as possible,” he underscored.
Earlier, the politician also held talks with the heads of major British companies investing in Hungary. In this context, he pointed to the need to get out of the recession and said that to do so, we need to encourage new investment to create the new jobs needed to maintain economic growth. He recalled that British companies are the sixth largest investor community in Hungary, with around 800 companies employing more than 50,000 people.
Finally, Szijjártó highlighted two other areas of strategic importance where the Hungarian and British governments share similar positions. The first is nuclear energy and the elimination of negative discrimination against it, while the second is tackling illegal immigration, which affects both countries.
Featured photo via Facebook/Péter Szijjártó