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Putin, Gyurcsány pleased with progress after meeting

Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány and Russian President Vladimir Putin both voiced their satisfaction with the progress of bilateral political relations after a meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Monday.

The two leaders said their talks mainly concerned energy, the construction of a big gas storage facility in Hungary and the joint construction of transport systems. The talks also touched on the particulars of cooperating in the electricity sector and on developing rail networks.
Gyurcsány said Russia was a partner with whom Hungary could look toward the future. Putin said he appreciated the pragmatic policy of the current Hungarian leadership, noting that Hungary, a member of NATO and the EU, had looked for and found the chance to develop relations with Russia, in line with its own national interests.
Putin said that, of the most important development programs in Russia, those in which Hungary can successfully work with Russia are agriculture and home construction. They both stressed the plan to expand the Záhony railway reloading station, in which Ukraine is also expected to be involved.
Both governments are committed to continuing with shared plans in gas transport and storage, Gyurcsány said. There are no signs suggesting that the huge gas storage facility to be built in Hungary in order to stabilize gas supply in Hungary and be distributed throughout Europe will not be implemented, Putin said.
Putin and Gyurcsány said work would continue on the planned extension of the Blue Stream gas pipeline, allowing for deliveries from Russia to arrive in Hungary via the Balkan States, bypassing Ukraine.
Hungarian Agriculture Minister József Gráf signed a bilateral framework agreement on cooperation in the farming and food sector with his Russian counterpart Aleksey Gordeyev on the sidelines of the meeting.