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Good Hungarian-Bulgarian relations based on mutual respect

At the press conference held after the meeting, he welcomed the fact that Bulgaria regards bilateral relations as a priority issue, and thanked the Bulgarian prime minister for the friendship he has shown to Hungary and the Hungarian people.

Mr. Orbán said that the good cooperation which has been forged between the two countries in recent years is based on mutual respect. This is “a scarce commodity in Europe today”, he said, and politicians in Europe “too easily abandon” this principle.

The Prime Minister said that those European countries which joined the European Union at a later stage, however, must not conform to this “lack of refinement”, as the essence of Europe is that each country must show respect to the others. Hungary itself shows Bulgaria the respect it deserves, and in return Hungary receives due respect from Bulgaria. This is a very strong foundation for the two countries’ cooperation, he pointed out.

The Prime Minister said that bilateral economic relations are flourishing, cooperation has yielded positive experiences, and Hungarian businesses receive fair treatment in Bulgaria, being allowed to take part in a fair competitive environment. Hungarian businesses are decidedly positive about Bulgaria, and see it as a stable country where there is no political instability, the rules are clear and measurable, and there is nothing that would detrimentally affect their operations, he said. He added that achieving this is no easy task, and offered congratulations to Bulgaria in this regard.

Mr. Orbán told the press that Hungarian businesses take advantage of the benefits offered by the stable and predictable environment, and Hungary must therefore increase the level of cooperation.

Mr. Orbán praised Bulgaria on having enacted specific measures to combat goods smuggling and organised crime, and having spent a great deal of money on eliminating smuggling.

The Prime Minister further pointed out that to date many Bulgarian university students have studied in Hungary, and Hungary would like to increase the number of young Bulgarians who have access to Hungarian state scholarships for their studies in Hungary.

Among the topics at the meeting, Boyko Borissov mentioned projects by Hungarian businesses in Bulgaria and the resumption of direct flights between Budapest and Sofia.