- 10 Jun 2015 9:00 AM
After singing a tune from Zoltán Kodály’s renowned folk opera “Háry János” (partially set in Italy), Mr. Balog said that just like the Hungarian soldiers in the song, “we long for foreign vistas, but our hearts draw us back home”.
Mr. Balog recalled Hungary’s outstanding performance at previous world fairs, and pointed out that Hungarian craftsmen were already present at the 1851 London World’s Fair.
He also recalled other acclaimed appearances of later Expos, such as those of inventors Loránd Eötvös and Ányos Jedlik and painter Mihály Munkácsy, as well as the success of Hungarian participation in Seville and Hanover.
Mr. Balog said that after the end of the Milan fair the Hungarian pavilion will be relocated to Szombathely, western Hungary and will serve as a local visitor centre.
Quoting the motto of the Milan fair, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”, Minister of Agriculture Sándor Fazekas said that the Hungarian pavilion focuses on healthy food and the preservation of drinking water sources.
He stressed that Hungary’s national rural development strategy laid the basis for multi-functional agriculture and environmental management, supplying high-value, healthy and safe food, local energy sources and raw materials, while at the same time preserving fertile grounds, the water base, the landscape, as well as people, communities and cultures living in it.
Hungary has created a unique culture in the Carpathian Basin, exemplified by a current list of 48 Hungaricums, some of which can also be tried in the pavilion. Mr. Fazekas said that Hungarian agricultural output increased by 42 percent in the past four years and Hungary was also the first country to implement a comprehensive ban on GMOs.
Government commissioner for the Hungarian pavilion Géza Szőcs reminded that the opening was scheduled for the World Environment Day and will be followed by a conference next day with the participation of prominent environmental experts from around the world.
The centrepiece of the Hungarian pavilion is a ceramic exhibit of the Zsolnay factory, which miraculously survived the fire of the Hungarian pavilion at the 1906 Milan World’s Fair and resurfaced after over 100 years in hiding. The exhibition also includes a new concerto piano invented by Gergely Bogányi, the bust of Nobel Laureate Albert Szent-Györgyi and rows of dried paprika.
The Milan World’s Fair opened on 1 May and will last until 31 October with an expected daily average of 200,000 visitors and expected total visitor number of over 20 million.
Source: Ministry of Human Capacities