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Finance Minister has talks with China Construction Bank chief

China Construction Bank's recent opening a branch in Budapest will further strengthen bilateral economic ties, Finance Minister Mihaly Varga said after talks with Tian Guoli, the head of the CCB Group, in Budapest on Friday.

The Hungarian government is committed to increasing Hungary’s role as a regional financial centre, the finance ministry cited Varga as saying, adding that the country’s competitive business environment and geographical location served as a good basis to those efforts.

Recent challenges such as the coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine have not broken the dynamism of ties with China, Varga said, and pointed to “frequent, high-level talks, and successful economic, trade, and cultural projects”.

In 2022, China was Hungary’s most important partner outside Europe, with a nearly 6 percent increase in bilateral trade exceeding a record 13 billion dollars, Varga said. Hungary is the primary target of Chinese investments in central and eastern Europe, with a total FDI of 8 billion dollars, the minister added.

Varga also noted Hungary’s successful bond issue in China and Hong Kong in recent years, adding that “Asian investors have confidence in the Hungarian economy”. CCB has been involved in Hungary’s issuing Green Panda bonds worth 50 billion forints, or one billion renminbi, he added.

CCB has been active in Hungary since June last year. Its Hungarian branch was opened on April 19.

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