Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szíjjártó (pictured) signed an agreement with representatives of the US state of Maryland in its capital Annapolis on Friday about the further operation of Budapest-based McDaniel College, reports 444.hu.
According to Szíjjártó this proves that “if somebody wants to settle an agreement with the Hungarian government, they can settle an agreement.”
The contract stipulates that McDaniel College must provide US-accredited degrees to students of the university’s four-year English-language bachelor program in Budapest. According to the Hungarian legislation, the university must complete the necessary modifications by November 15 this year.
“If someone wants to settle an agreement instead of creating a political roughhouse, then they can very quickly settle an agreement with the Hungarian government about the further operation,” said Szíjjártó, referring to the Central European University in Budapest, which made international headlines after coming into the crosshairs of the Hungarian government via modifications to Hungary’s higher education law.
Since the adoption of these controversial modifications, which were widely seen as written specifically to liquidate CEU, leading government figures have repeatedly insisted that if only the US Federal Government would negotiate with the Hungarian government, CEU’s future would not be in question. However, Fidesz politicians neglect to acknowledge that according to the American Constitution, the Federal Government does not have the authority to negotiate about matters of higher education.
Szíjjártó did not disclose whether the Ministry has made any progress yet in negotiating an agreement with the State of New York about CEU.