Hungary to take on much bigger role in NATO 

English2021. jún. 17.MTI-Andits Eszter, Brussels

Hungary is taking on a more significant role in the operation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization than ever before, said Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó before the summit of the leaders of NATO member states.

 At a press conference in Brussels, Péter Szijjártó said that in November this year Hungary will take command of NATO's largest land operation, KFOR in Kosovo, and next year it will once again be the leader of the defence of the airspace over the Baltic States, while providing eastern and southern partners with key equipment for health protection. 

He explained that Hungary will increase its military presence in Kosovo to 500 troops, and will also undertake the vaccination of KFOR personnel against the coronavirus. At the same time, NATO is providing ventilators to several eastern and southern partners through a fund set up to alleviate the epidemic.

The minister also stressed that Hungary, fulfilling its commitment made at the 2014 NATO summit in Wales, will allocate 2 percent of its budget on defence spending by 2024 at the latest. The amount was 1.6 percent this year, and will be 1.87 percent next year. 

He added that Hungary had already fulfilled the other commitment made at the Welsh Summit concerning the allocation of 20 percent of its defence budget to developments five years before the deadline.

The Foreign Minister also mentioned that the NATO Summit will take place at a time when the world is entering a new era, as the changed political and economic relations following the pandemic require a new approach. 

These changes have serious security aspects, therefore Hungary supports NATO 2030, the new strategic concept of the organization,

Péter Szijjártó pointed out.