Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó held talks with Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini in Rome, agreeing on a deal that allows Hungarian companies to export goods from the port of Trieste from 2026.
Szijjártó announced the agreement on Facebook, in a live video streaming from Rome. The minister reminded that the Hungarian government bought a large area in the port of Trieste, with the goal to allow Hungarian companies fast and easy access to a seaport. He added that the government has prepared the plans for infrastructural upgrades at the port, which would allow the shipment of over 2,5 million tonnes of goods from and to the port. Minister Szijjártó said the Minister Salvini approved the plans, and the two of them agreed on a deal worth 45 million euros, which will allow Hungary to start work on the upgrading of the docks. The minister said as a result of the joint Italian-Hungarian investment the new port will be one of the most important hubs in Europe, which is to be completed by 2026.
Minister Szijjártó underscored that he is glad there are still politicians like Matteo Salvini in Europe. He said Salvini, whom he described as an old friend, is one of ‘those who are able to think rationally about migration’. He added that Salvini ‘experienced it first hand what the consequences are when someone puts the safety of their country first instead of engaging in liberal hypocrisy.’ He stressed that Salvini, similarly to the Hungarian government, is able to see the dangers of migration clearly and is brave enough to speak about it openly. ‘It is important that our voices against migration are heard in Brussels, so that they [Brussels] stop supporting it,’ Péter Szijjártó said in the video.
Migration Situation Worsening
He underlined that Hungary is under pressure from two avenues of migration. On the one hand, refugees from Ukraine are flowing into the country every day, and on the other hand, illegal migrants are attacking the southern borders. Only this year, the authorities stopped over 225 thousand illegal attempts to cross the border, and there are 1500 ongoing proceedings against human smugglers, some of whom have used firearms to attack Hungarian border guards.
‘Aggression has reached new levels; thus, it would be high time for Brussels to realise that their pro-migration policies are causing serious danger in countries, there are human lives at risk at this point,’ Szijjártó emphasized. He declared that migration needs to be stopped, not managed. ‘However, if Brussels refuses to change their policies, we will be experiencing even greater pressure on our southern borders, possibly reaching numbers we saw in 2015,’ the minister warned.
He added that Italy has one of the most advanced economies in the world, so cooperation with Rome can help Hungary tremendously in avoiding recession. He also reminded that Italian companies represent the 9th largest group of investors in Hungary. Italy is Hungary’s 4th largest trade partner, with bilateral trade reaching the value of 12 billion euros last year, and the expectation is that this number will grow by 20 to 25 per cent this year.