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Marching on the bridge

June 27th, 2011

The most notable change in Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s foreign policy is that he has realized the necessity of cooperating with China – writes Gyula Krajczár in Népszabadság.  The Hungarian PM and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao signed a dozen bilateral agreements on Saturday in Budapest.

Krajczár nevertheless derides the language used to explain the government’s new China-policy:  “to suggest that both countries ‘favour a work-based society,’ should be attributed to the fact that he (Orbán) has to win over on a daily basis all those who react to similar stupidities. One thing is for certain: Chinese-Hungarian trade relations are now reaching a higher level both in size and quality,” – acknowledges Népszabadság, with reference to agreements which include developing air and water transportation, railway and freight deliveries,   a €1.1 billion financial project between the Bank of China and Hungarian chemicals company BorsodChem, and a declaration of cooperation on an East- Central European logistics and commerce platform.

“Anyway, we are just marching over the bridge together with China and as long as the bridge can stand it, we should be proud of it. A new, well-prepared, purposeful, hard-working, global leader has appeared in the Hungarian economy and we should not handle it with salon-nationalism,” – warns the left wing daily.

China is not a charity institution, but an economic superpower protecting its own interests – reacts Magyar Nemzet. The author, Levente Sitkei warns that “with the wrong policy approach, we might easily pull the Asian giant over us, sinking into economic dependency and becoming simply a logistics base.”

“By following ethical principles and knowing our own potential, however, we might open huge advantages for Hungary…Hopefully, the era when Hungary adored a big foreign country or bloc of countries more than herself is now over,” – writes Levente Sitkei.

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