Prime Minister Viktor Orbán - Photo: PMO

Orbán: Hungary supports Moldova’s EU integration

Hungary supports Moldova's European Union membership unconditionally, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said after talks with Moldovan Prime Minister Dorin Recean in Budapest on Thursday.

Besides the advantages of membership for Moldova, “the EU would also benefit from new energy, from countries known to be inhabited by balanced, stable and hard-working people,” Orbán told a joint press conference with Recean.

Moldova signed the association agreement with the EU eight years ago, which Orbán called a “painfully long time”. He added that he hoped they could “recover some of the lost time by speeding up the accession talks”.

Hungary would also benefit from a tariff exemption between Moldova and the EU, Orbán said. Hungary is also working to re-establish direct flights between the two countries.

The prime minister said relations were untrammeled by any unresolved disputes, and each had a positive view of the other and sought cooperation. At the same time, the intensity and strength of diplomatic relations were not what they could be, he added, so the purpose of today’s meeting was to forge closer cooperation.

Orbán said Moldova was “on a straight path” to European Union membership and Hungary understood the geopolitical environment that made its EU accession a matter of urgency.

The prime minister offered to host a large number of students from Moldova at its diplomatic academy.

The two countries have been in diplomatic relations for 32 years and signed a strategic partnership agreement four years ago, Orbán noted, adding that bilateral trade was worth 200 million dollars.

“Our pharmaceutical exports are growing rapidly, our food exports are solid and we also have a presence in the banking sector and in aviation,” Orbán said.

As both countries are energy importers, Orbán said, it was in the interest of both Hungary and Moldova that energy networks in central and south-eastern Europe should be as developed as possible, also in the areas of economic and military security, he said.

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