Hungary deal to deepen ties across sectors

Hungary deal to deepen ties across sectors

Envoys explore ways to boost exchanges

András Baranyi, Hungary's deputy state secretary for development of eastern relations, left, and Sarun Charoensuwan, deputy permanent secretary for foreign affairs, at the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Somchai Poomlard
András Baranyi, Hungary's deputy state secretary for development of eastern relations, left, and Sarun Charoensuwan, deputy permanent secretary for foreign affairs, at the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Somchai Poomlard

Thailand and Hungary yesterday agreed to deepen economic ties and broaden their cooperation across various sectors in the third session of the Thai-Hungarian Joint Commission for Economic Cooperation (JCEC), which was held at the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

According to the ministry's deputy permanent secretary, Sarun Charoensuwan, since the JCEC was first established in 2004 to promote bilateral ties, cooperation between Thailand and Hungary has proceeded smoothly.

"That said, there is significant potential for further economic cooperation through investment," he said.

In the meeting, both countries agreed to ramp up cooperation in various sectors, particularly agriculture and food, education, energy, environment, sciences and technology, as well as tourism.

Mr Sarun said the government used the opportunity to urge Hungarian companies to invest in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) and use Thailand as their hub so that they could expand their businesses in the region.

András Baranyi, deputy state secretary for development of eastern relations at Hungary's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the Agreement on the Promotion and Protection of Investments, which was signed by both parties back in 1991, will be further updated to facilitate more business exchanges.

Beyond economic cooperation, at the meeting Thailand and Hungary expressed their commitment to supporting and building on the framework on Integrated Water Resources Management which was established in 2019.

In the field of education, both nations agreed to ramp up exchanges between their respective institutes of higher education, scientific academies and other research institutions.

The Hungarian government will provide 40 scholarships for Thai students under the 2023-2025 Stipendium Hungaricum Scholarship Programme, he said.

To enhance cultural exchanges between the two nations and mark 50 years of diplomatic relations between Thailand and Hungary, the Hungarian Culture and Innovation Ministry and Thailand's Culture Ministry will sign a Memorandum of Understanding to ramp up the promotion of both nations' food, film, fashion and other cultural activities and events.

Budapest is grateful to the International Federation of Muaythai Associations for the opportunity to host next year's Muaythai World Championship, Mr Baranyi said.

This could be lined up with other events to celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Thailand and Hungary, he added.

Similarly, Mr Sarun thanked the Hungarian government for agreeing to sell 400,000 doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines last October when Thailand was in short supply -- as well as the 100,000 doses of Moderna vaccines Hungary sold to Thailand in March this year.

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