Hungary’s top challenges of 2021 are the pandemic and migration, says Foreign Minister Szijjártó

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Besides the coronavirus pandemic, immigration will remain the second biggest challenge this year, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said on Monday. This also means that the government will continue its fight to protect national interests and will not yield to any pressure, he added. The minister said Hungary is “still standing on two legs” on the issue of vaccine procurement, meaning that besides the European Union’s common vaccine purchase, it is also looking at available alternative sources. “For every vaccine development that promises success, we’re there, be it west or east of us,” he said, adding that if a safe vaccine is being tested somewhere in the world, the government will do its utmost to make it available to the Hungarian people as soon as possible.

Migration remains key priority “We will continue to defend ourselves against illegal migration both at the southern border and in Brussels,” Szijjártó said. He expressed his firm belief that, in addition to the pandemic, illegal immigration will be the other major challenge this year. Brussels’ migration-friendly policy is continuing, which means the country must prepare for renewed migration pressure. Unfortunately, migration processes will no longer be only a cultural and security risk, but also an epidemiological one, he said. Therefore, the government will do everything possible to stem illegal immigration again this year. He said the country must defend both the southern border and its position in Brussels, asserting that no illegal migrant can enter Hungary.

The cabinet will also continue to do its utmost to protect Hungarian workplaces, he said. “We are currently competing for 78 large corporate investments, and we will also provide another loan of more than 300 billion forints (€830 million) to Hungarian companies that are trying to take advantage of the opportunities arising from changes in the world economy and the world market,” said the head of the ministry. “We know exactly that the Hungarian economy is export-oriented: the more Hungarian companies can export, the better it performs. However, for the economy to perform well, people need to work, and this requires protecting their health and work,” said Szijjártó.

Title image: Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó. (Magyar Hírlap/László Katona)

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