Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration bids farewell to outgoing Hungarian Ambassador
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ms. Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, bade farewell to Mr. András Szabós, the outgoing Hungarian Ambassador to Ghana.
Mr. Szabós, a career diplomat, was appointed Ambassador to Ghana in 2016 and simultaneously accredited to Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Togo and Burkina Faso.
During the farewell, the Minister congratulated Mr. Szabós on the success of his mission to Ghana.
She praised the cordial relations of Ghana and Hungary with the adoption of common positions in international forums, in particular within the framework of the Non-Aligned Movement.
She welcomed the Ambassador’s interventions, which culminated in the visit of Mr. Péter Szijjártó, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Policy, from November 30 to December 1, 2017, for the official inauguration of the Embassy. from Hungary to Accra and the establishment of the Hungarian Business Forum.
Ms Botchwey cited the forthcoming official visit of Hungarian President János Áder to Ghana on January 13, 2022, which would provide a unique opportunity to identify new areas of cooperation and improve bilateral relations.
During Mr. Szabós’ tenure as Ambassador, the Ghanaian Parliament ratified the Agreement on Mutual Visa Exemption for Holders of Diplomatic and Service Passports (November 2019) and a Memorandum of Understanding was signed in 2019 on cooperation in water management, with a commitment to work towards establishing a transparent cooperation framework between parties on the basis of equality, reciprocity and mutual benefit, she said. .
Ms Botchwey said the € 50 million contract signed between the Jospong group of companies and the Hungarian government for the construction of wastewater treatment plants in Tamale and Takoradi would ensure that Ghana meets its targets under United Nations sustainable development goal six on sanitation.
She recalled that Mr. Mohammad Habibu Tijani, former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, had led the delegation of Ghana to the 17th Global Export Development Forum of the International Trade Center in Budapest in 2017.
During the forum, discussions were held with Mr. Péter Szijjártó, Hungarian Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Mr. Zoltán Balog, Minister of Human Capacities, in order to strengthen bilateral cooperation, particularly in the fields of education, culture and sports.
She recognized Hungary’s immense contribution to education, especially with scholarships for Ghanaian students increasing from 50 to 100 per year.
She commended the Hungarian government for donating 3,300 pieces of N9s surgical masks and face masks to Ghana to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic, which was facilitated by the Ambassador and Mr. Imre Hegyesi, Chief of a sludge management company in Takoradi.
Ms. Botchwey assured Mr. Szabós of the government’s determination to take advantage of Ghana’s role as President of ECOWAS to promote democracy, good governance, peace and security in the sub-region.
She said the ministry would support her successor to further consolidate the gains made.
Mr. Szabós congratulated Ghana on its election as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the period 2022-2023.
He said bilateral ties have grown stronger over the past five years, with Hungary establishing an embassy in Accra to cement those ties.