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Global cooperation between East and West is not more important than ever, according to Hungary’s foreign minister, attending the Indo-Pacific Forum held in Prague.

Within Europe, the hope of cooperation between East and West has evaporated for the time being due to the war in Ukraine, but on a global level this cooperation is ever more important, Péter Szijjártó said, calling for talks with countries in South-East Asia on prospective partnership and cooperation agreements to accelerate, and arguing that intensifying foreign relations would strengthen the EU. Striking free trade agreements with Indonesia, New Zealand and Australia would be key in that regard. A rethink of East-West supply chains for the European economy was vitally important, Szijjártó said, adding that “failure to improve economic cooperation between Europe and the Indo-Pacific region would deprive both sides of significant growth potential, which is why it is the task of governments and institutions in Brussels to strengthen active relations to their mutual benefit.”