Hungary is convinced that the Western Balkans’ place is in the European Union, Barna Pál Zsigmond, state secretary of the EU affairs ministry, said on Tuesday after meeting North Macedonian foreign ministry state secretary Filip Tosevski. Zsigmond said on Facebook that Tosevski had told him it was important for North Macedonia to be given a chance during Hungary’s EU presidency to present the steps it has taken in the interest of integration. Hungary is committed to the issue of the region’s EU integration and sees the Western Balkan countries as key partners, actively supporting their accession process, Zsigmond said, adding the government was convinced that the region’s integration would make the EU stronger and boost its competitiveness.
He said he and Tosevski had also talked about the importance of North Macedonians seeing that EU membership was a good thing and that the bloc offered a real perspective and opportunity at membership. Zsigmond said Hungary and North Macedonia shared very similar views on migration, adding that the aim was for there to be no illegal migrants on their countries’ territories.
The two officials also reviewed the parts of the European Commission’s new EU enlargement package that apply to North Macedonia. Zsigmond said he had assured Tosevski that Hungary would do everything it could to advance the integration of the countries that take meaningful steps in the interest of their EU accession.