• international relations

CGTN: ‘Golden voyage’ in bilateral ties: China, Hungary outline new blueprint for cooperation, development

PRNewswire May 10, 2024

BEIJING, May 10, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — China and Hungary decided on Thursday to elevate bilateral relations to an “all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership for the new era.”

The decision was announced during the talks between visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.

Pushing bilateral relations to new heights, the two leaders affirmed that the decision has charted the course for the future development of ChinaHungary relations, and will inject new and powerful impetus into bilateral cooperation and create a better future for the two peoples.

Noting that this year marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Hungary, Xi called on the two countries to continue to be good friends with mutual trust and good partners for win-win cooperation.

‘All-weather comprehensive strategic partnership for the new era’

Ahead of his visit to Hungary, Xi had a signed article published in the Hungarian newspaper Magyar Nemzet, where he said the bilateral relationship is at its best in history, and has embarked on a golden voyage.

The bilateral trade volume in 2023 reached $14.52 billion, an increase of 73 percent compared with that in 2013, according to the China-Hungary Investment and Cooperation Report. Meanwhile, China’s direct investment in Hungary reached 7.6 billion euros in 2023, accounting for 58 percent of Hungary’s total foreign direct investment.

Hungary is the first European country to sign a Belt and Road cooperation document with China. In recent years, the Belt and Road Initiative has synergized more closely with Hungary’s Eastern Opening strategy, enhancing bilateral practical cooperation in trade, investment, finance and other areas.

Last December, Chinese electric vehicle maker BYD announced to build its first European new energy passenger vehicle factory in Hungary, which Hungary’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto described as “one of the most significant investments in Hungary’s economic history.”

Chinese modernization will surely bring more opportunities to Hungary and other countries in the world, Xi told Orban, adding that Hungary is welcomed to be China’s companion on its path to Chinese modernization.

During a meeting with Hungarian President Tamas Sulyok on Thursday, Xi said China is willing to work with Hungary to promote greater synergy between Chinese modernization and Hungary’s Eastern Opening strategy, continuously lead in the right direction of the Belt and Road cooperation as well as cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European countries, and to deepen and substantiate bilateral cooperation.

Cementing ChinaHungary friendship

People-to-people connectivity is an endless source of strength for ChinaHungary relations, Xi stressed in the signed article, adding that the more exchanges between the two peoples, the stronger the foundations of the friendship will be.

Ahead of the Spring Festival of 2023, two students of the Hungarian-Chinese bilingual school in Budapest wrote a letter to Xi and his wife, Professor Peng Liyuan, conveying their New Year’s greetings and expressing their willingness to study in Chinese universities.

In his reply, Xi encouraged Hungarian youths to learn more about China and become envoys of the ChinaHungary friendship.

Hungarian language courses are included in the curriculum at many Chinese universities. Meanwhile, the Confucius Institutes and Confucius Classrooms, where students can learn Chinese, are gaining popularity and participation in Hungary.

Exchanges and mutual visits at the sub-national level are growing as well. Direct passenger flights reach double digits per week and measures to facilitate two-way travels are in place, delivering substantial results.

Xi called on both sides to continue to support the teaching of their respective languages, and encourage more communication and interactions between peoples and institutions from the two countries.

Emphasizing that China’s development is an opportunity rather than a risk to Europe, Orban told Xi that the Hungarian side does not identify with the rhetoric of so-called “overcapacity” or “de-risking.”

Hungary’s determination to deepen cooperation with China is unwavering and will not be disturbed by any force,” he said.



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