Mr Orbán stressed that the two countries had no unsettled issues and looked upon each other positively, seeking cooperation. At the same time, the frequency and intensity of diplomatic meetings are, for some reason, not what they should be.
He added that therefore the purpose of the meeting was to create closer cooperation as all the foundations were in place for the two countries to cooperate much more intensively than they have done so far.
Hungary has supported Moldova’s EU membership also to date, and we will continue to do so. Regarding this, there is no compromise, there is no dispute of any kind, Mr Orbán stated.
By his account, Moldova is on a straight path leading to EU membership, and Hungary understands the geopolitical environment which necessitates accession within the shortest possible time.
He added that it was not only that EU membership was good for Moldova; the European Union, too, needs new energy, needs countries which are known to be balanced and stable countries inhabited by people who want to work.
Moldova’s reputation in Europe is good on account of its guest workers, he said, highlighting that “we ourselves see them as people who want to, are able to and like to work, and today, there is a shortage of these very people in the European Union.”
In a joint press statement made together with his Moldovan counterpart, the Hungarian prime minister said the eight years since Moldova signed an association agreement with the European Union “is a disagreeably long time.” He expressed hope that by speeding up the accession talks, they will be able to make up for some of the lost time.
Hungary is already past its EU accession, and is therefore fully aware that this is an extremely complex task, Mr Orbán said, offering, on behalf of Hungary and its diplomacy academy, to receive a large number of Moldovan students.
The two countries have had diplomatic relations for 32 years, and signed a strategic partnership agreement 4 years ago. By now, the volume of trade between Hungary and Moldova has broken all previous records, reaching around USD 200 million, he recalled, adding that we would like to increase this continuously.
He also said it would be good for Hungary if there were tariffs-free relations between Moldova and the European Union. “Our pharmaceutical exports are continuously, in fact, dramatically increasing, we are also good at the exportation of our food industry products, we are present in the banking sector, and we are also present in air transport,” he pointed out.
He said Hungary wishes to make proactive efforts to ensure that the two countries are again connected by direct flights from as early as the end of March.
As both countries import the energy necessary for the functioning of their economies, both Hungary and Moldova have a vested interest in improving the quality of energy networks in the Central and Southeast European regions; this represents economic and military security all at once, he explained.
The two governments agree on all strategic issues, he said in summary, adding that talks will continue on Thursday as part of a working lunch.