Scientific and Cultural Diplomacy Enhances Competitiveness
Hungarian Foreign Trade at Record Heights due to the Country’s Scientific and Cultural Diplomacy StrategyJuly 15th, 2016
Cultural and scientific diplomacy is an important factor in Hungarian economic competitiveness. This factor played a great role in 2015, in the most successful year in the history of Hungarian foreign trade – announced Hungary’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Peter Szijjártó.
“The results prove that integrating cultural and scientific diplomacy into the system of foreign affairs and trade was, and continues to be an important step” - Mr. Szijjártó declared. He added that last year’s foreign trade performance broke all previous records with regards to both foreign trade surplus and foreign investment.
“Culture plays an important role in preserving the strength of the nation, in maintaining and reinforcing ties and relations between nations, and in resolving conflicts,” explained the Minister. In his view, Europe is currently experiencing major global and regional tensions which may have a negative impact on European national economies.
The Hungarian Government’s response to this comes in the form of more scientific diplomacy, a stronger focus on development, more investment in scientific research, and an increased maintenance of cultural relationships with European and overseas countries.
The Hungarian organization for cultural and public diplomacy, the Balassi Institute, now operates in 24 countries worldwide. Mr. Szijjártó has emphasized that the Institute would continue to operate as part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade under the supervision of the State Secretariat for Cultural and Scientific Diplomacy.
The Institute and its offices around the world are expected to continue with a full staff and with more newly appointed scientific and cultural attachés.