Azerbaijan, Hungary seek to boost economic co-op
Azerbaijan and Hungary plan to sign a number of memorandums of understanding in different fields including ICT, tourism, and agriculture, Hungarian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Zsolt Csutora said on January 16.
The MoUs will be signed at the 4th Azerbaijani-Hungarian Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation, which will be held in Baku on January 27-28.
"During the meeting, the commission will discuss concrete projects and proposals in the areas of mutual cooperation," he said.
Hungarian State Secretary, and the co-chairman of the joint intergovernmental commission, Peter Szijjarto will head the Hungarian delegation.
Azerbaijani side of the commission is led by Economy and Industry Minister Shahin Mustafayev.
"The meeting will discuss the current state of bilateral economic relations, as well as the prospects for expanding economic cooperation," Csutora said, adding that the meeting will also provide opportunities for investment in the Hungarian economy.
Moreover, a forum with the participation of business people from the two countries will be held in Baku at the sidelines of the meeting.
Speaking about economic relations of the two countries, the ambassador said they are satisfactory.
"Last year, we succeeded to increase trade turnover by 30 percent compared to 2012. According to our data, last year's trade turnover between the two countries amounted to about 60 million euros, and another 20 million euros was provided by the service sector," Csutora said.
He went on to note that opening direct flights between Baku and Budapest in June 2013 facilitated development of cooperation between the two countries.
"The Hungarian Wizz Air airline company has already operated for six months, and during this period, passenger traffic reached more than 14,000 people. This year the company expects to increase passenger traffic up to 26,000 people," he said, adding that the company plans to increase the number of flights up to three times a week.
"All of these issues are currently being discussed by the visiting delegation of the company, led by its Director General Jozsef Varadi. Negotiations are underway with representatives of Azerbaijan Airlines JSC and Silk Way. This issue will also be on the agenda of the intergovernmental commission meeting," Csutora said.
Hungary recognized Azerbaijan's independence in 1991, and diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in April 1992.
The Azerbaijani-Hungarian relations are at a high level and are based on friendship and mutual interests. The high-level relations have paved the way for the development of cooperation in various fields.
Moreover, Azerbaijan and Hungary have great opportunities for the expansion of economic cooperation, establishment of relations between the players of the securities market, as well as exchange of experience and knowledge in this sector.
A trading house was established in Azerbaijan in 2012 to develop the country's cooperation with Hungarian medium-sized businesses.