A Correspondent

Indian companies can access EU market through Hungary, says Ranjit Rae

NEDUMBASSERY: Steps will be taken to strengthen economic and cultural ties between India and Hungary, Ranjit Rae, the Ambassador Designate to Hungary, said here on Tuesday.

Mr. Rae, who is slated to take charge on January 31, was talking to reporters here at the airport. He will also be looking after the Indian affairs in Slovenia and Bosnia.

He is currently the Joint secretary for Northern regions, including Nepal and Bhutan, at the Ministry of External Affairs.

Mr. Rae said that bilateral trade between India and Hungary currently stood at $145 million, which he regarded as low. Asked about ways to improve the trade relations between the two countries, he said that one of his prominent jobs on taking charge would be to draw up a plan for the same.

Mr. Rae said that Indian companies are showing greater interest in Hungary.

Information Technology firms like Satyam and TCS have already set up offices there. TCS has 400 professionals stationed in Hungary.

He said that being a constituent of the European Union with comparatively lower costs than the rest of the European countries, Hungary was important for the interests of Indian companies which are increasingly becoming global players.

Indian businesses could access the European market and establish a foothold through Hungary, he averred.

Mr. Rae said the two countries held centuries-old relations. Alexander Korose, one of the great Hungarian intellectuals of the 18th century, lived and worked in India and had even brought out a Tibetan-English dictionary, he added.