NAIROBI, 18th January 2022, (PSCU)—President Uhuru Kenyatta has hailed the strong bilateral ties between Kenya and Hungary saying the relationship is driven largely by economic cooperation, trade and investments.
At the same time, President Kenyatta regretted the low volumes of trade and investment flow between Nairobi and Budapest over the last five decades despite the existing huge commercial potential.
"To address the low trade volumes, we have to intensify efforts to promote greater linkages and networks between the private sector and business communities in the two countries; and encourage them to take advantage of the economic opportunities existing in our respective countries,” he said.
President Kenyatta spoke on Monday evening at State House, Nairobi during a state banquet he hosted together with First Lady Margaret Kenyatta for visiting Hungarian President János Áder and his spouse Anita Herczegh.
At the banquet, also attended by political leaders Raila Odinga, Musalia Mudavadi, Kalonzo Musyoka, Moses Wetangula and Gideon Moi among others, President Kenyatta said Kenya was counting on the support of Hungary to unlock the economic partnership agreement between the East African Community and the European Union.
“Kenya looks forward to the signing of the Economic Partnership Agreement between the East African Community and the European Union to open up greater trading and economic opportunities,” President Kenyatta said.
On multilateralism, President Kenyatta said Kenya and Hungary share common positions on key global issues including climate change, and thanked the European nation for the support that led to Kenya's election as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.
“Mitigating climate change is an imperative of our times and my Government’s commitment to this noble cause extends to the United Nations Security Council where climate and security is an important focus during our term.
“We look forward to continue working closely with the Government of Hungary, within the UN system and other multilateral forums, to champion the climate change agenda and other shared global priorities,” he said.
Once again, President Kenyatta reiterated Kenya's commitment to multilateralism saying the country fully supports the United Nations system.
“As a strong advocate for multilateralism and a rule-based international order, and home to the only UN headquarters in the global south, Kenya, like Hungary, is fully committed to supporting the work of the United Nations, and it is our desire to maintain Nairobi’s position as the central hub of the United Nations system in the developing world,” President Kenyatta said.
On regional peace and security, President Kenyatta said Kenya will continue to utilize her experience as a peace mediator to champion for sustainable stability on the continent particularly in the Horn of Africa region.
“Kenya will continue to leverage on her experience as a mediator and guarantor of peace processes to advance the agenda of sustainable regional peace and security in the Horn of Africa and beyond, and seeks the global community’s support through multilateral fora,” he said.
In his address, Hungarian President János Áder commended the Government for its commitment to improving the lives of Kenyans through transformational development programmes, and expressed optimism that the current development tempo will continue beyond President Kenyatta's term.
“What I wish you Mr President, because you will be handing over your office in August, is that during this remaining six months, you should have enough time and you should have enough strength to prepare all these (development) programmes and to launch them.
“I wish that your successor should have the same kind of enthusiasm and drive to actually conclude all these (development) programmes like the way you started Mr President,” President Ader said.