Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor was the guest of honour at the Hungarian Trade and Cultural Centre (HTCC) which opened in Dubai on the Palm Jumeirah on Sunday March 15, 2015. Al Habtoor joined Sandor Balogh, President of the HTCC. The opening coincided with the anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution.
Al Habtoor joined Balogh to ceremoniously cut the ribbon to officially mark the opening of the HTCC. The Centre, one of a few around the world, aims to bring together Hungarian companies and entrepreneurs with potential partners from the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
“Today’s opening marks an important milestone, and I would like to take this opportunity to honour the fallen heroes,” Balogh said. “Our aim is to assist businesses looking for opportunities here by bringing together UAE businesses with Hungarian entrepreneurs.”
Al Habtoor said dialogue is very important to make the HTCC a success, but added that promotion is key. He said, “I have told the Hungarian Prime Minister, and Foreign Minister to go to Abu Dhabi and invite our leaders to Budapest to see with their own eyes the potential opportunities that are available in Hungary. It is a country that is rich in history, culture and natural beauty.”
He added, “I would also like to encourage more Hungarian businesses to the UAE. This is the land of opportunity; there are endless opportunities in many sectors. What sets us apart from the West is that in the UAE our leaders are incredibly supportive of enterprise. I am proof of that. My company motto is ‘Growing with the UAE’, we work together for the betterment of the country. This is the secret to our success.”
The Al Habtoor Group Chairman pointed out that travelling to and from the Hungarian capital is easier than ever from the UAE. Both Emirates airline and Etihad Airways fly direct to Budapest, as well as Hungarian budget carrier Wizz Air.
Al Habtoor has significant investments in Hungary including the historic Le Méridien in the capital Budapest, which he purchased in 2012, and last year he added the InterContinental Hotel on the River Danube to his international portfolio.