Hungarian Defense Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky and Turkish Industry and Technology Minister Mehmet Fatih Kacır
Continuing to build and strengthen the Hungarian defense industry is of strategic importance, and the sector provides a new opportunity for the Hungarian economy, Defense Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky stressed at a press conference following his talks with Turkish Industry and Technology Minister Mehmet Fatih Kacır in Budapest on Thursday.
The Hungarian Minister stressed that the defense industry should be seen as a sector that would meet the needs of the new Hungarian armed forces, one of the driving forces of the Hungarian national economy. Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky recalled that around 2016, the Hungarian government recognized the need to start developing its armed forces. This process has been started and will continue with the support of major international strategic partners. Examples of international strategic cooperation can be seen in Várpalota and Zalaegerszeg (both in western Hungary), he added.
In December 2020, an agreement
was reached to set up a plant for the production of medium and large caliber ammunition in Várpalota. The factory, also known as the Defense Industrial Park, is already under construction
, with the supporting structures for the production building, warehouses, and office building now complete
. Under the terms of the contract, the Hungarian Defense Forces have also agreed with Rheinmetall to purchase around 218 Rheinmetall Lynx KF41 combat vehicles. All but the first 46 units will be produced in Hungary, specifically in a factory recently built
The Minister of Defense stressed the importance of innovation, pointing out that the Ministry had set up the Defense Innovation Research Institute (VIKI), linked in its work to the NATO DIANA. This will also allow Hungarian companies to link up with development work with major international partners.
At the press conference, the minister said that Türkiye is a strategic partner of Hungary and cooperation is also intense in the military field. In is opinion, Türkiye can be seen as an example, as it has built up a stable and strong defense industry over many decades.
He pointed out that
during the meeting with Mehmet Fatih Kacır, a number of cooperation opportunities were reviewed and an expert working group was set up to manage them.
At the press conference, Kacır stressed the importance of scientific-innovation and defense industrial cooperation in Hungarian-Turkish relations. They plan to declare 2025 as the Turkish-Hungarian year of science and innovation. The Turkish Minister stressed that Hungary is an important trade partner for the country, and the trade volume between the two countries has doubled in the last seventeen years and is approaching the annual common target of USD 6 billion.
Via MTI, Featured image: honvedelem.hu