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Putin's Visit To Budapest: Energy Policy In Focus

Tamás Székely 2015.02.17.

Vladimir Putin will discuss the Russia-Hungary gas agreement, which will be either extended or replaced by a new one, an advisor to the Russian president said. Briefing journalists about Putin’s Tuesday working visit to Budapest, Yuri Ushakov said Putin and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán would discuss “the situation that has developed as a result of withdrawal from the South Stream pipeline project due to the European Union’s position”. Hungary is an important market for Russian crude oil and natural gas, he noted.

The upgrade of Hungary’s sole nuclear power plant and the implementation of the related bilateral agreement on Paks will also be discussed, he said, noting that Sergey Kiriyenko, the head of leading Russian state nuclear energy firm Rosatom, will also be in Hungary as member of Putin’s delegation. A package of five pacts has also been prepared to coincide with the visit, including an agreement on training Hungarian nuclear experts in Russia and Hungary’s opening a consulate-general in Kazan, the seat of the Republic of Tatarstan, Ushakov said. The others include agreements on health care and higher education as well as regional cooperation, he said.

At a meeting held on Saturday, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó asked for the support of the parliamentary parties in order to reach national foreign affairs objectives. Among various kinds of issues, discussions were also held on Hungary’s energy security. Together with the Prime Minister, foreign minister Péter Szijjártó asked the opposition leaders for support “to further develop the pragmatic cooperation with Russia”, in order to agree on important issues of the Hungarian economy.

via hungarymatters.hu and kormany.hu photo: Anadolu Ajansi – Kayhan Ozer / ntvmsnbc.com