Hungary looks to Qatar to meet energy needs

January 29, 2013 - 12:52:33 am

H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada and  Peter Szijjarto exchanging documents at the signing ceremony yesterday.

DOHA: Hungary is eyeing Qatar as its key partner to meet its strategic target to make it energy secure. A top visiting official said yesterday the country is looking for cooperation  in various sectors of the emerging  Qatar, including in agriculture and infrastructure.

A high-level delegation, led by  Peter Szijjarto, State Secretary of the Hungarian Prime Minister’s Office, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU)  with Qatar on energy cooperation in the event of  Croatia launches its  international LNG terminal, where Qatar  is likely to be  one of the top players delivering LNG there.

The Minister of Energy and Industry and Chairman and Managing Director of Qatar Petroleum 

H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, and Szijjarto signed the MoU between the Ministry of Energy and Industry in Qatar and the Ministry of National Development in Hungary.

Making country energy secure is our prime target. We need to stop depending on a single-country source developing multiple sources. Being   top LNG exporter and third biggest gas resource, we believe Qatar can be one of our major partners to help meet our target, Peter told yesterday.

“The proposed Croatian LNG terminal can play a key role in Hungary-Qatar partnership. We understand negotiations were going on with Qatari partners and Croatian partners,” he said.

Szijjarto said electricity is another key area where Hungary is keen to develop partnership with Qatar. Hungarian companies have got world-class facilities in restoring transmission lines.  “We have also agreed   on signing an agreement on economic cooperation in Qatar’s business and trade sector ahead of forming a joint committee to boost the bilateral trade.”

On Hungary’s interests in partnering with Qatar’s flagship rail project, he said: “Our rail and road construction companies have major presence in the Mena region. The Europe’s first-ever underground railway has been operating in Budapest. Budapest technical university has world famous faculty capable of honing the skills of  rail road engineers and experts.  We are also ready to receive Qatari students interested in developing their  career in the rail and road sectors.”

Hungary can cooperate with Qatar in growing wheat and exporting high quality sheep and poultry. Qatar’s imports of sheep and poultry from Syria and Saudi Arabia are often interrupted. Hungary can ensure a smooth supply of quality meat products to Qatar.  Peter said  the value of Hungary-Qatar bilateral trade value saw a  quantum jump over the last one year.  The bilateral trade value stands $60m for the full year 2012 compared with $40m in 2011. The fresh partnership is expected to further boost the trade volume, he said.

The delegation also held talks with H E Rashid bin Khalifa bin Mohamed Al Khalifa, Assistant Minister for Services Affairs; H E Sheikh Jassim bin Abdulaziz Al Thani, Minister of Business and Trade, top officials of Qatar Holding, Hassad Food, Q-Rail and Supreme Committee for Qatar 2022 among others.

The Peninsula