Interest in Hungarian food produce is “serious and real” in Canada and the Hungarian government is making every effort to promote successful partnerships with Canadian firms, foreign ministry official Levente Magyar said at the end of a three-day visit to Canada. The state secretary told MTI that the main purpose of his visit was to promote Hungarian food produce among Canadian suppliers with a view to significantly boosting current annual exports of 21 million euros. He held talks with a dozen of importers and with Canadian investors already present in Hungary. He cited Linamar, which has around 3,000 employees and is expanding its bases in Orosháza and Békéscsaba, introducing state-of-the-art technology in agricultural machinery and parts manufacturing. Linamar is an important strategic partner of the Hungarian government and its expansion projects receive government support, he added.
Magyar said there was great potential in bilateral cooperation, with current annual trade totalling around 330 million euros, much less than Hungary’s turnover with other countries of a similar size. The HungaroFeszt in Toronto also offers a good opportunity to present the country, he said. The Alliance of Hungarian Businesses is a driver of the Hungarian community there, organising events and offering the institutional framework for ethnic Hungarians to nurture their community. At the same time, he said political relations were “frozen” because Canada had an “extreme liberal” government which “attacks Hungary in a hysterical manner” in order to gain “domestic political capital”. “This is testimony to Hungary’s enhanced international role,” he said. “They are paying attention to us, and what we say matters.” Magyar said that after the upcoming elections in Canada, the country will “hopefully shift in a direction that is closer to the Hungarian government’s position in such important areas as the preservation of identity and Christian culture, and responses to global events like international mass migration and other civilisation challenges.”