Good afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen.
The current Budapest summit comes towards the end of an exciting year. The prime ministers have reviewed the results achieved over the past few years, and have identified tasks for the future. My sole duty now is to briefly summarise what we discussed at our meeting.
We confirmed the recognition that a new world order is taking shape around us – both politically and economically. In this new world order the role of Asia and China has increased significantly, and will continue to increase in the future. Asia and China have also become a determining factor in terms of finance and technology. Central Europe welcomes this development. In our view, the strengthening of the Chinese economy also offers great opportunities to the countries of Central Europe. Unfolding before us are the signs of a success story: the success story of cooperation between the countries of Central Europe and China. There is enormous growth potential in the Central European region. You can see this potential if you study the Central European region’s economic growth figures. In this cooperation system, eleven of us are Member States of the European Union, while five of us are not yet members. In terms of the future, the key question is whether we can involve the Central European countries in the European Union and the other five countries aspiring to become members in overarching long-term economic projects, investments and developments which will lead to the rise of the entire region. In order for this region to be able to grow, we need external resources in terms of technology and financing. Existing European resources are no longer sufficient on their own. We therefore welcome the fact that, as part of the new economic world order, China wishes to be present in the growth and development of this region. We have reviewed the most important projects in which this cooperation manifests itself. From among these, I should mention the modernisation and development of the Belgrade–Budapest railway line. This is a flagship project with future strategic significance for freight traffic along the Silk Road within the One Belt One Road Initiative. Today we had the opportunity to hear about projects and development plans which will create “win-win” situations: situations in which every participating party will be a winner. What we have achieved today is beneficial for China, beneficial for the European Union, and also beneficial for the countries of Central Europe.
The Prime Minister of Bulgaria is standing here because Bulgaria will be responsible for organising the next meeting. This is an excellent choice. Prime Minister Borisov is one of the Central European region’s greatest warriors, and one of its most experienced prime ministers. So we’re certain that next year his country will organise a summit that will be even better than this one in Budapest.
I wish our Bulgarian friends every success.