On Thursday morning, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán traveled to Ashgabat at the invitation of Serdar Berdimuhamedow, President of Turkmenistan, with whom he held talks on Friday. On Thursday, Orbán attended a working dinner with Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, chairman of the People’s Council of Turkmenistan.
The Hungarian Oeconomus Economic Research Institute said in an analysis of the visit that Hungary currently exports mainly pharmaceuticals and electronic equipment to Turkmenistan, while fertilizers account for 99% of imports. At the same time, Turkmenistan is also a key energy hub, with the world’s fourth largest natural gas reserves, potentially providing a solution to diversify domestic energy supplies.
In a press statement on Friday, Orbán also touched on the energy issue, saying that we need energy to come to Europe from Central Asia, and to do this we need new sources, routes, and infrastructure. He added that
Turkmenistan could be a “great partner” for Europe and Hungary.
The Prime Minister said that relations between Turkmenistan and Hungary have always been predictable, reliable and based on mutual respect. “Accordingly, we came here with good intentions” and with the plan to “broaden and deepen cooperation between the two countries,” he added.
Orbán emphasized that the current war situation has upset traditional economic relations, and may even open up a new era in the world economy. He said that the classic East-West transport and supply routes had been disrupted, so “we have to look for new routes and new partners.” The current situation is revaluing the whole Central Asian region and there is a good chance that this region will become the bridge between East and West, he stressed.
The Prime Minister stressed that they are urging the institutions of the European Union to bring into force the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement signed 25 years ago with Turkmenistan.
In such a difficult situation, when Europe is cutting itself off from Russian energy sources, it is unacceptable not to sign a partnership agreement that is of major economic interest to Europe, he emphasized.
He also said that Hungary would play a major role in supplying Turkmenistan with medicine, and that after negotiations there would be an opportunity for cooperation in the water sector as well as in energy cooperation.
Orbán added that it is also planned to start teaching the Hungarian language in Turkmenistan and that the two countries would also like to establish political and economic relations of the same strength and depth as their historical kinship.
Source: Hungary Today