By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat
Hungary’s Export Import (Exim) Bank has agreed to extend 1 billion euro (P64 billion) financing for companies doing in the Philippines, according to Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez.
Lopez, who led a trade and investment mission to Hungary last week, reported this financing commitment by Hungary’s Eximbank after bilateral meeting with Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Peter Szijjarto and Deputy Speaker of the Hungarian Parliament Istvan Jacab.
Both countries agreed to hold an inaugural meeting of Joint Committee on Economic and Trade Cooperation (JCTEC) in September this year.
“We pushed for our exports such as agri-based – banana mango coconut and their processed products, carageenan, canned tuna and marine products, electronics, auto parts, aerospace parts. They have strong interest on mango banana coconut and carrageenan,” he said. Lopez said the financing commitment is expected to boost bilateral trade between the countries where Philippines can use Hungary as its staging point for further market penetration into the EU and Hungary into beefing its presence in ASEAN.
DTI Undersecretary Rodolfo S. Ceferino said there are already 4 Hungarian garment firms and one water treatment facility projects which can avail of the Eximbank facility.
“Hungary is recognized as our friend in EU, supportive of extension of GSP+ trade privileges, and in pursuing talks on PH-EU FTA and ASEAN-EU FTA. Hungary can be our gateway to EU as Philippines becomes their gateway to ASEAN,” Lopez said.
The trade chief was able to talk to business chambers and invited them to invest here and make the Philippines as their production hub in Asean.
Hungary has been helping the Philippines during disasters working with the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council. They were the first to send tents and water purifier and filtration system, which are still being used in Tacloban.
“Their strength on water management made them offer water management services for LLDA. They funded their own feasibility study,” he said. On top of that, Hungary also extended scholarship grants to some Filipinos.
Philippines-Hungary relations have significantly improved with the reopening of their embassy in the Philippines.
Tags: Eximbank, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Hungary, Hungary’s Eximbank extends 1 B euro for firms investing in PH, Joint Committee on Economic and Trade Cooperation, National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council, trade and investment