Cooperation with the East is good for Hungary

The Governor of the Central Bank and the Minister of Foreign Affairs praised the current cooperation with the East at the Budapest Eurasia Forum 2020 online conference.

György Matolcsy, Governor of the Central Bank, stated that a new era, the age of Eurasia, was coming. With the Atlantic period slowly coming to an end, “we are at the beginning of another 400-500-year period,” and the advance of the Eurasian era will also be accelerated by the coronavirus epidemic. He called long-term sustainability in geopolitics and financial systems, as well as in technology and nature, key features of the 20th century.

The central bank governor also said it is important to learn from the dramatic events of the 1940s and 1970s in order to build a sustainable continent and support the integration of Eurasia.

Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó spoke about the fact that the deepening of Eurasian cooperation will also strengthen the European Union. He noted that Hungary recognized the growing economic importance of the East in 2010 and announced a collaboration with the East, which led to many attacks on the country.

Among the results of this cooperation, he mentioned that Hungary’s exports to the East increased by 22 percent in 10 years, and trade volume increased by 25 percent. Last year was the first year that more investments came not from Germany but from South Korea, which became Hungary’s number one foreign investor. In 2019, 50 percent of foreign investment and 40 percent of new jobs were tied to Eastern investors, Szijjártó noted.

Zhou Xiaochuan, vice chairman of the Boao Forum for Asia and former governor of the Central Bank of China (PBoC), stressed that Hungary has played an important role in maintaining a dialogue between Europe and Asia during the coronavirus epidemic. He said that the epidemic is a critical point in human history and must be tackled together, without isolation.

Zhou Xiaochuan, who received the Lámfalussy Prize three years ago, also highlighted the Forum for Asia and how he is working to develop economic relations between the two continents.

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