Addresses Media onboard Air India One on his way to Hungary
The Vice President has said that our relations with Hungary are very old and the scholars from both countries have done much work on cultural traditions of India and Hungary. He further said that some of the work of Hungarian Indologists can be seen in the Library of Asiatic Society in Kolkata. Our cultural relations with Hungary are thus very well embedded, he pointed out. He further mentioned that the Indian Embassy had played a distinctive role at the time of the 1956 Revolution in Hungary and the same was acknowledged by the Hungarian side including their President during his visit to India. He said he would also visit a place outside Budapest which has memories of a visit by Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore.
Referring to the somewhat limited bilateral exchanges at senior level, the Vice President said that the purpose of this visit is to fill this gap. He further said that Hungary is a member of European Union and it is coming up as a good place where Indian business can operate in Europe as a whole. There are a number of high profile Indian Companies operating from Budapest and Hungary has a certain technologies in which we would be interested in like IT, Defence etc., he added.
The Vice President said that India would be signing two MoUs with Hungary, one on water management and the other between the Indian Council of World Affairs and its Hungarian counterpart. He further said that this visit gives us an opportunity to learn about the Central European point of view of global issues.
On Algerian leg of the visit, the Vice President said that Algeria is rich in Oil and Natural Gas and it is a major supplier of gas to Europe. He further said that India buys some oil from Algeria and we will explore little more closely ways to increase the exchange. Adding that Algeria also has extensive reserves of Phosphates, the Vice President said that India will explore the possibility of a joint venture fertilizer plant where Algerian Phosphate, Gas and Indian Technology can be used for producing fertilizer and transporting the same to India.
Responding to a question, the Vice President said that the proposed MoU on water management was aimed what we can learn from their experiences on how to clean a river and make it navigable.
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