Hungary supports the acceleration of Turkey’s EU accession talks and Turkish visa liberalisation as cooperation with Ankara is key to the management of the refugee crisis afflicting Europe, Péter Szijjártó told the Hungarian News Agency MTI on Tuesday by telephone.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade said that the main topic of his talks with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Turkish Foreign Minister Feridun Hadi Sinirlioglu was the issue of immigration.
He reiterated that Turkey is the country which receives refugees in the largest number in the world, and is “simultaneously a key country in the management of Europe’s immigration crisis” as if Ankara failed to provide care for millions of refugees, it would impose an unmanageable migration pressure on Europe.
Mr Szijjártó said that, in the interest of the swift conclusion of an agreement between Ankara and Brussels, Hungary supports the opening of new chapters in Turkey’s EU accession talks before the end of this year, and additionally the Hungarian Government also provides technical assistance for Ankara in the acceleration of Turkish visa liberalisation. Hungary further supports the concept that the European Union should take over the funding of refugee camps in Turkey, and should the need arise for the construction of new camps, the European Union should finance those as well, he added.
The Foreign Minister pointed out: it is essential in the interest of the management of the refugee crisis that European politicians should stop making irresponsible statements which have induced thousands of immigrants to set out for Europe.
Mr Szijjártó told MTI that during the course of his talks, he also discussed bilateral issues, with special emphasis on economic cooperation, with his negotiating partners. The Minister reiterated that after last year’s record trade between the two countries, Hungarian exports continued to increase in the first seven months of this year.
As he stressed, Eximbank’s representation in Istanbul will start its operations within weeks, and a credit facility worth USD 153 million will be made available to support cooperation between Hungarian and Turkish businesses. The Minister added: it further promotes an increase in trade between the two countries that as of November, there will be two direct cargo trains weekly – instead of one at present – between Istanbul and Budapest. In answer to a question, he pointed out that Hungary would like to increase Hungarian exports to Turkey also in the sectors of agriculture and food industry, in addition to the automobile industry and the electronics industry.
During the course of the day, Mr Szijjártó will also have talks with Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Ali Riza Alaboyun and Minister of Food, Agriculture and Livestock Kutbettin Arzu.
(MTI - kormany.hu)