Quests for Strong Cooperation in Uzbekistan-Hungary Relations

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After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Uzbekistan and Hungary began to establish relations at various levels. Although the relations between the two countries were limited due to geographical distance in the early periods, both the Middle Corridor and the Organization of Turkic States accelerated the development of relations between the parties. On September 3, 2018, the leaders of the two countries also participated in the sixth summit of the Organization of Turkic States, whose name was the Turkic Council at that time. At this summit, Hungary became an observer member, while Uzbekistan became a full member at the seventh summit on October 15, 2019. This development has allowed relations to progress in a multidimensional and structural format

Mutual visits organized by heads of state are decisive in the development of relations between Uzbekistan and Hungary. One of the visits was made by Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban on March 29, 2021. During the visit, a common attitude towards the development of cooperation in the political, commercial, technical, cultural and humanitarian fields was demonstrated. In addition, the parties stated that they are ready to increase their relations to the level of “strategic partnership.”

The visit can be interpreted as a sign of goodwill for the development of economic relations between the parties. In particular, the tripling of the trade volume between the two countries in the last four years and the holding of the First Meeting of the Uzbekistan-Hungary Business Council are indicators of this.[1] Furthermore, on the occasion of the visit, it was emphasized that Uzbekistan-Hungary cooperation is based on solid foundations and that the two states have established contacts at the right time. In this context, it was stated that relations will develop in all areas from agriculture to nuclear and even expressed that there will be a Central Asian-Central European dimension to this. In this regard, Orban asked to assist from the President of Uzbekistan, Mr. Shavkat Mirziyoyev.[2]

As a reflection of the developing bilateral relations, Mr. Mirziyoyev visited Budapest on October 3-4, 2022. While economic, cultural and humanitarian relations formed the agenda of the visit, deepening of strategic partnership and expansion of multifaceted cooperation were also discussed. Moreover, the leaders exchanged views on international and regional policies, including cooperation processes carried out within the Organization of Turkic States.[3]

It can be said that Mr. Mirziyoyev’s visit is important in many ways. First of all, both states are full and observer members of the OTS. The fact that the visit was held before the OTS Summit to be held in Samarkand, Uzbekistan on November 11, 2022, reveals that the states intend to accelerate the cooperation and integration process.

On the other hand, it is known that Hungary is the center of the Middle Corridor in Europe. Considering that Uzbekistan is also of key importance in the Middle Corridor, it can be argued that there is a geographical interdependency between the parties. It can also be argued that this geographical relationship is tried to be deepened through various sectors. Already for this reason, after the meeting between the leaders, 15 agreements were signed before the governments and ministries. Moreover, it was also decided to cooperate in the agricultural, transportation, pharmaceutical, textile, food, electricity, water saving and industrial sectors. In addition to all these, the parties agreed on the goal of increasing the trade volume between the two countries to 500 million dollars.[4]

As can be understood, both Tashkent and Budapest are committed to strengthening diplomatic relations. With the visit of Mr. Mirziyoyev, Uzbekistan has decided to open a diplomatic mission in this country. On the other hand, Hungary already has an embassy in Tashkent. Undoubtedly, the fact that Uzbekistan will open an embassy in Budapest will allow relations to acquire a more institutional nature.

Finally, it should be emphasized that on the occasion of the visit, the parties signed a “Joint Declaration” to raise relations to the level of “strategic partnership.” The situation shows that the integration processes among the Turkic states have strengthened. Because the steps taken by Uzbekistan in this regard are remarkable. For example, it is stated that Uzbekistan, which signed the “Declaration of Alliance” with Kazakhstan in December 2021, aims to deepen its “strategic partnership” relationship with Turkmenistan through established high-level contacts.

Consequently, the relations between Uzbekistan and Hungary tend to develop and deepen. In this regard, the mutual visits of the heads of state are decisive. The situation reflects positively on the Middle Corridor and ensures that the parties become key actors of East-West interaction.

[1] “Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Viktor Orban Hold a Narrow-Format Meeting”, Uz Daily,, (Date of Accession: 05.10.2022).

[2] “Orbán: Hungarians and Uzbeks ‘Held Hands at the Right Time’”, Hungary Today,, (Date of Accession: 05.10.2022).

[3] “President of Uzbekistan to Pay Official Visit to Hungary”, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan,, (Date of Accession: 05.10.2022).

[4] “Uzbekistan to Open Diplomatic Mission in Hungary”, AKI Press,, (Date of Accession: 05.10.2022).

Dr. Emrah KAYA
ANKASAM Dış Politika Uzmanı Dr. Emrah Kaya, Akdeniz Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nden mezundur. Yüksek lisans derecesini 2014 yılında Süleyman Demirel Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nde hazırladığı “Latin Amerika'da Sol Liderlerin Yükselişi ve Uluslararası Politikaya Etkisi: Venezuela-Bolivya Örneği” başlıklı teziyle almıştır. Kaya, doktora derecesini de 2022 yılında aynı üniversitede hazırladığı "Terörle Mücadelede Müzakere Yöntemi: ETA-FARC-LTTE-PKK" başlıklı teziyle elde etmiştir. İyi derecede İngilizce bilen Kaya'nın başlıca çalışma alanları; Orta Asya, Latin Amerika, terörizm ve barış süreçleridir.