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Tuesday, March 30, 2021 19:01
Although the Turkish Council’s Central Asian and Caucasus member states are resource-rich and growing dynamically, they face geographical barriers and a lack of infrastructure. Based on all this, however, these countries offer Hungary many economic opportunities. The development of bilateral relations was discussed in Uzbekistan yesterday by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and Uzbek President Savkat Mirzijoyev. The Hungarian prime minister would have traveled to Turkestan today for the next meeting of the Turkish Council, but the Kazakh organizers decided to hold the summit in the form of an online video conference in view of the epidemic situation.
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said yesterday in Tashkent, the Uzbek capital, that Hungarian-Uzbek relations are on solid ground, and that co-operation between the two countries has gained momentum. The Prime Minister also emphasized that the whole world politics and economy is in transition: some regions are rising, the centers of the world economy are changing, new technologies are coming.
– At the beginning of this new era, we took each other’s hands, Hungarians and Uzbeks, at a good pace, and we are trying to take advantage of the opportunity that this great transformation holds for everyone, Central Asia and Central Europe.
– The whole country is fighting the coronavirus epidemic, but in the meantime we have to keep half our eyes on the economy, on the restart of the economy
The prime minister said in a Facebook login made during the Uzbek trip. Viktor Orbán also explained that we have reached the stage of Hungarian economic policy, when the strengthened Hungarian companies will establish companies abroad, make investments and the profits generated there will be brought home to Hungary.
– This is how we will restore the financial balance of the Hungarian economy
– stated Viktor Orbán, adding that the business opportunities of Hungarian companies are being expanded in Uzbekistan.
In his statement to MTI, Péter Szijjártó said:
The Uzbek and Hungarian governments signed nine agreements in Tashkent, giving Hungarian companies the opportunity to restructure or modernize strategic sectors in Uzbekistan.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade explained that a significant Hungarian role is expected in increasing Uzbek nuclear energy production. As the seventh largest uranium producer in the world, Uzbekistan is building another nuclear power plant. The minister also reported that trade between the two countries increased by thirty-eight percent in a single year. According to the data of the Central Statistical Office, Hungary’s product exports to Uzbekistan amounted to nearly HUF 36 billion in 2020.
We have concluded 9 agreements, as a result of which Hungarian companies will play a key role in modernizing strategic sectors in Uzbekistan.
Posted by Péter Szijjártó on Tuesday, March 30, 2021
An important foreign economic partner for Hungary is the Turkish Council as a whole, which consists mainly of the post-Soviet Turkish-speaking countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus. According to the analysis of the Institute of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Economy (CCI), these states are rich in resources, but are lagging behind in terms of infrastructure, while becoming more open economically.
With a population of 33.5 million and an area of 447.4 thousand square kilometers, Uzbekistan ranks sixth in the world in terms of cotton production, seventh in gold production and twentieth in the world in terms of natural gas production.
From a logistical point of view, however, the region is at a significant disadvantage compared to the rest of the world. The Turkish-speaking countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus do not have an ocean exit and are located in the middle of the vast Eurasian continent, which poses huge geographical challenges for them, the CCI’s analysis explains. Moreover, the countries of the Turkish Council have not escaped the consequences of the coronavirus epidemic. While they could expect significant economic growth in 2019, they had to post huge losses in 2020, but moderate growth is projected to return for the most part in 2021. Overall, however, these countries already provide an attractive environment for the rest of the world, which can also be observed in the development of external economic indicators. Uzbekistan’s most important import partners in 2020 were China (22 percent and $ 4.44 billion) and Russia (20 percent and $ 4.08 billion). So everyone is trying to seize the opportunities of the countries of the Turkish Council.
Hungary, on the other hand, stands out from this crowd in that it maintains representation in even the most resource-modest Kyrgyzstan as well as in the largest Kazakhstan, and has observer status in the Turkish Council.
In addition to building foreign economic relations, Hungary also supports the cultural recognition of countries within the international community, writes the analysis of the CCI.