Hungary Table of Contents
Crown of Saint Stephen, which the United States returned to
Hungary in 1978
Courtesy Gustav Forster
Relations between Hungary and the United States began to warm in 1978 when the United States returned the Crown of Saint Stephen to Hungary (the crown had fallen into American hands after World War II). High-level political contacts took place rather frequently in the 1980s. Hungary benefited from these contacts because the United States kept it abreast of the course of Soviet-United States arms control negotiations. In 1986 Secretary of State George Shultz visited Hungary, and in 1987 Central Committee secretary Szuros visited the United States. In the summer of 1988, General Secretary Grosz paid a ten-day visit to the United States.
Hungary has taken certain steps to improve its relations with the United States. The Department of State has reacted favorably to Hungary's efforts in the area of human rights. United States officials have also praised the introduction of market mechanisms in the Hungarian economy.
In 1986 trade between Hungary and the United States amounted to US$345 million. The Hungarian government sought the renewal of most-favored-nation status on a three-year cycle rather than annually to facilitate planning in the foreign trade sector. During his visit in 1988, Grosz devoted most of his attention to economic matters, seeking to encourage greater and more varied cooperation between the two countries. The United States responded by allowing Hungary to open a trade bureau on the Pacific coast.
Data as of September 1989