Foreign Minister Meets with his Hungarian Counterpart

1. On December 16, Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se held a meeting and a working luncheon with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto of Hungary during the latter Minister's visit to the Republic of Korea on December 15 and 16. The two top diplomats discussed the ROK-Hungary relations and their policies toward North Korea; ways to step up substantive cooperation in such sectors as trade, investment, science, technology, defense industry and infrastructure; situations in diverse regions of the world; and ways to work together on the international stage.

2. The two sides shared the view that the relations between their two countries are moving forward across the board, as can be from the three summit meetings over the past two years; and agreed to continue boosting high-level exchanges and to step up strategic cooperation on the bilateral, regional and global levels.

3. Minister Yun, citing the 25-fold growth in the trade volume since the establishment of diplomatic relations and a Korean company's recent decision to invest in an automotive battery plant in Hungary, noted with appreciation that the scope of bilateral economic cooperation is broadening to include new engines for growth. Minister Szijjarto, calling the investment a model case of future-oriented cooperation between the ROK and Central Europe that will also contribute to the economic development of Hungary, voiced hope for a further growth in the bilateral trade and investment.

Minister Yun, bringing attention to areas with great potential for bilateral cooperation, including science, technology and joint research in the fields; national defense and relevant industry; and infrastructure, voiced hope that the two countries will make tangible progress in inter-governmental consultations in these areas. Minister Szijjarto, sharing Minister Yun's view, expressed hope that the two countries will launch direct flights between them and offer more government scholarships to students from the other country in efforts to increase people-to-people exchanges.

4. Minister Yun, calling North Korea's nuclear and missile provocations a very stern security threat that must be addressed with urgency, extended appreciation to Hungary for its close coordination on North Korean issues and asked it to take an active part in the international efforts to pressure the North, including by thoroughly implementing UN Security Council Resolution 2321 and enforcing the additional unilateral sanctions to be adopted by the EU.

Minister Szijjarto stated that Hungary will remain cooperative with the ROK on North Korean issues and play an active role in the EU's efforts to achieve effect from its tough sanctions and pressure on North Korea.

5. The two sides, taking note of the ROK-Visegrad Group (V4) summit talks in December 2015, agreed to continue to move the ROK-V4 cooperation forward.

The two Ministers, noting with appreciation close cooperation between the ROK and Hungary at the UN and on other international stages, voiced hope for closer cooperation on climate change, development and other global issues.

6. The ROK-Hungary foreign ministerial meeting, which came one year after the ROK-V4 foreign ministerial meeting in November 2015, is seen to have helped the ROK diversify cooperation with its major partner in Central Europe on the bilateral, regional and global levels.

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs Republic of Korea

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