Hong Kong and Hungary have taken a step closer towards developing trade and investment links after a visit by the former prime minister of the East European nation. Peter Medgyessy met acting Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen and Secretary for Commerce, Industry and Technology John Tsang Chun-wah last week following visits to Beijing and Shanghai. Dr Medgyessy said Mr Tsang had suggested direct flights between Hong Kong and Budapest. The Hungarian capital already has direct flights to Beijing and talks are under way for a Shanghai service. 'I think Hong Kong has a real added value for Central and Eastern Europe and for Hungary,' Dr Medgyessy said. 'Hong Kong is much closer to Western Europe and Hungary in its mentality, market economy and democratic institutions. Shanghai is magnificent to look at but Hong Kong has a well-established, polished standing with 40 years of development behind it.' The Hong Kong Trade Development Council led a delegation to Budapest last month and a number of Hong Kong companies, including Hutchison, have links with Hungary. Dr Medgyessy said Hungary could serve as an intermediary for Hong Kong business and investment in Central and Eastern European states. 'We think Hong Kong can serve as a bridge and offer a good opportunity for Hungary to create a triangular co-operative relationship with China. We also want to attract investment from Hong Kong, mostly in logistics and financial services.' He added that Hungary was interested in promoting tourism and Hungarian wines in Hong Kong. Two years ago Dr Medgyessy became the first leader from Hungary to make an official visit to China in 44 years. President Hu Jintao made a reciprocal trip to Hungary during a tour of Central and Eastern Europe last year.