Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó attended the handover of the warehouse for the Hungarian division of French veterinary pharmaceutical company Ceva.
The first phase, worth a total of HUF 8.2 billion, received HUF 1.6 billion in state support. Since the project started, the company has created 180 new jobs in Hungary.
The minister said that the veterinary sector has “its own COVID-19,” for example, in the form of swine fever and avian influenza. According to him, epidemics such as these can cause enormous damage, leading to large-scale livestock mortality, serious economic problems and supply disruptions. Furthermore, it could take months or even years to restore market confidence in the affected products.
According to experts, three-quarters of all infectious diseases in humans originate in animals, and 887 viruses found in animals have recently been identified that carry a risk of transmission to humans, he said. The minister pointed out that viruses are constantly mutating, so constant innovation and research are needed, which is why Ceva’s current investment is so important.
86 percent of the products manufactured in Hungary by the company, which has 110 sites in 46 countries around the world, are sold to export markets, Szijjártó said.
The investment will create the largest cold storage facility in the European Union, with the capacity to store around 2.5 million ampoules of vaccines. The minister also said that the output of the Hungarian pharmaceutical industry had increased by 5 percent in the first nine months of this year, providing jobs for some 35,000 people.
French companies are the fifth-largest investor community in Hungary, while France is Hungary’s ninth most-important trading partner. The value of Hungarian exports to France increased by 20 percent in the first eight months of 2021, Szijjártó said.