Péter Szijjártó, Hungary’s minister of foreign affairs, attended the cornerstone laying ceremony for the Novi Sad-Kelebia section of the Belgrade-Budapest railway in Novi Sad, in northern Serbia, on Monday.
Addressing the event, the minister said that those arguing against the construction of the high-speed railway and establishing a transport route between the Greek ports and western Europe want to deprive Hungary and Serbia of their competitive edge. The opponents of the project want to play into the hands of other countries and act against Serbia and Hungary’s national interests, he said.
Szijjártó noted that 2020 had been the first year when China’s trade with both the European Union and the United States exceeded the EU-US turnover. “More and more Chinese commodities arrive in the Greek ports and need to be transported to central and western Europe. There is a sharp competition for providing a transit route for them,” he said. “Serbia and Hungary have entered the race by deciding to construct a modern and safe railway line.” By 2025 both the Hungarian and the Serbian sections of the over-300-kilometre line will have been completed, enabling the two countries to win the race, Szijjártó said. The project is financed by China, Serbia and Hungary.