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Hungary will join an investment fund to be set up by countries of the Turkic Council, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said after attending a teleconference of the council’s economy ministers on Wednesday.

In a Facebook entry, Szijjártó said that the fund would be instrumental in making investments primarily in food production, farming and infrastructure both in Hungary and Turkic Council countries. He added that Turkey would also join the fund.

Szijjártó said that Wednesday’s conference was given a special significance by the economic aspects of the coronavirus pandemic. He warned of restructuring trends in the global economy, including a strengthening of economies in the East. While in 2007, 81 percent of global investments had been financed from Western funds, the share of Eastern capital had increased to 58 percent by last year, he argued.

In the conference, Szijjártó thanked Turkic countries for their contribution to Hungary’s efforts against the spread of coronavirus, and made special mention of Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan for their face mask supplies.

Concerning ties with the Turkic countries, Szijjártó said that Hungary had doubled the turnover of trade with them in the past 10 years. He also added that Hungary’s Eximbank has offered a total 707 million dollars in loans aimed at assisting Hungarian companies with initiatives in Turkic countries.

Participants in the conference agreed that coronavirus-related restrictions should not slow down international trade, the free and fast movement of goods being in everybody’s interest, Szijjártó said.

Featured photo illustration by Balázs Szecsődi/PM’s Press Office