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1 CET - 22 March 1995 (mind)  244 sor     (cikkei)
2 Hungarian Office of NATO - Newsletter nr.7 (mind)  140 sor     (cikkei)
3 Hungarian Office of NATO - Newsletter nr.8 (mind)  123 sor     (cikkei)
4 VoA - Magyarorszag/egyetemistak (mind)  61 sor     (cikkei)
5 cet - 23 March 1995 (mind)  270 sor     (cikkei)

+ - CET - 22 March 1995 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

Wednesday, 22 March 1995
Volume 2, Issue 58


  A Hungarian-led Organization for Security and Cooperation in
  Europe, or OSCE, delegation heads to Moscow today.  It'll be
  trying to iron out the details of a plan to set up a permanent
  OSCE office in Chechnya.  Hungarian  diplomat Istvan Horvath
  says if all goes well a final agreement could be in place by
  this Monday.  Hungary is currently chairing the Vienna-based
  OSCE.  Horvath says the OSCE would like to open its mission in
  Grozny within a month.

  The Budapest Stock Exchange yesterday began listing
  over-the-counter trades on a limited basis.  The market says
  it can attract business by allowing the over-the-counter
  exchange to list trades electronically.  It also hopes the
  deals will make the unregulated trading more open, and
  therefore more attractive to investors.  OTC business will
  be conducted on the bourse for 25 minutes each afternoon.

  Budapest's GiroCredit brokerage is recommending blue chip
  export firms as a buy on the Budapest Stock Exchange.  It says
  investors should take advantage of low prices now, ahead of a
  possible spring rally.  GiroCredit particularly recommends the
  pharmaceutical stocks, Richter and Egis, the textile firm
  Graboplast and Pick salami.  This is the latest good news to
  come from last week's forint devaluation, and announcement
  that future currency mark downs will occur on a regular


  By David Fondler, in cooperation with Business Central Europe

  Budapest Bank is scheduled to be the next major bank privatized
  in Hungary.  But last week, the leading contender, Credit
  Suisse, bowed out.  Budapest Bank also lost its president last
  month.  But no worries there.  He ascended to the post of
  finance minister.

  Credit Suisse was expected to pay $80 to $100 million for a
  majority share of Budapest Bank.  Instead, it'll pay nothing.
  After weeks of expensive research, the Swiss bank said
  Budapest Bank didn't fit its corporate mold.  Bela Singlovics
  is chief executive officer at Budapest Bank.  He describes the
  bank's reaction to the Swiss announcement:

  "I can say that that was a surprise considering the amount of
  work Credit Suisse and the firms involved by Credit Suisse
  undertook in the last two months. I don't want to pretend that
  for us what happened is neutral, or we don't care, because we
  do care."

  Budapest Bank has been known to clear hurdles in the past.
  Saddled with $327 million in bad loans when it was formed in
  1987, the bank has bolstered its reserves and developed
  innovative new services.  These include its ATM network and
  a system that allows the government to pay student stipends
  electronically.  Many of these new ideas came from the bank's
  former President Lajos Bokros, who left Budapest Bank last
  month to become Hungary's new finance minister.  Singlovics
  says that shouldn't have made a difference to Credit Suisse:

  "I don't think that the Swiss would buy a person, they wanted to
  buy a bank and not a given person, although they trusted and
  still trust Dr. Bokros."

  Greg Gransden, politics and economics editor at Business Central
  Europe magazine, agrees.  He says Bokros's move will only help
  the bank.

  "Bokros himself understands very well the need and the
  desirability of privatization, and now that he's finance
  minister he has a position from which to push it from above."

  Help from high places is nothing new for the bank.  It boasts
  some huge corporate clients like Hungary's state-owned oil
  company MOL and the state electric utility MVM.  But both MOL
  and MVM are themselves slated to be sold off, possibly this
  year.  Once that happens, it's unclear whether Budapest Bank
  can retain them as clients, especially if they're sold to
  western interests which already do business with western
  banks.  But that problem could be years down the road.

  The other side of the privatization coin is the sell-off of
  smaller industrial firms which have been steadily losing
  money.  Many of these are part of Budapest Bank's bad loan
  portfolio, which is not unique for communist-era banks. 
  Gransden explains:

  "Under central planning, the banks weren't so much banks as we
  know them, but they were like agencies to funnel credit from
  the government to state companies.  During the transition, when
  these banks had to turn into market-driven credit
  institutions, these loans remained on their books."

  And this is where Bokros comes in.  He can help the
  privatization of the entire banking sector, if he continues
  the previous finance minister's policy of selling off or
  liquidating unprofitable state businesses, getting their bad
  loans off the banks' books and making all state-owned banks
  more attractive.
  So, maybe Credit Suisse isn't interested in Budapest Bank.  But
  the bank does have other suitors, namely Allied Irish Bank and
  ING Bank.  But Budapest Bank will have to compete for their
  attention.  ING is trying to buy Britain's failed Barings
  Bank, and Allied Irish has already purchased Poland's WBK


  Interview with Stephen Heintz, European Studies Center director
  at the Institute for East-West Studies in Prague.  
  By Nancy Marshall
  It's a country of 55 million people, the size of France, but
  Ukraine thinks it's getting the short end of the stick as far
  as western aid goes.  As of the end of 1994, the west had
  pledged $62.5 billion in aid to Poland, Hungary, Slovakia,
  Romania, Bulgaria and the Czech Republic.  Ukraine has
  received just a fraction of that.  Stephen Heintz is one of
  the authors of a study on the scale and scope of foreign aid
  and investment in the region.  He's just returned from Kiev,
  where he met with top officials in the government of President
  Leonid Kuchma.

  Heintz:  We had a very successful series of meetings.   The
  government is very committed.  It understands that part of
  the reason Ukraine hasn't fared so well to date is the
  responsiblity of the Ukrainian government itself.  They're
  committed to taking significant steps to restructure their
  assistance coordination efforts, to establish priorities, and
  to make their case in a much more effective way to the donor

  CET:  You mentioned the Ukrainian government officials you spoke
  with realized that this is partly their fault.  What has the
  problem been?  Why hasn't more aid been flowing into Ukraine?

  Heintz:  There have been two or three problems.  The first is
  that for many months following Ukrainian independence, there
  was real concern on the part of most observers including those
  in donor organizations and governments as to whether or not
  Ukraine was committed to economic reform and the building of a
  market economy.  Now those concerns have been largely
  dispelled following the election of President Kuchma last July
  and the ambitious reform program he's embarked on for Ukraine.
  The second obstacle is that the institutions of the state in
  Ukraine are still very young.  We all have to realize that
  Ukraine was never an independent state except very briefly
  from 1918 to 1921.  And so the actual structures of statehood
  aren't as well developed as they are in countries like Poland,
  Hungary and the Czech Republic.

  CET:  Did some of the Ukrainian government officials with whom
  you spoke feel that in giving up its nuclear weapons the
  Ukraine gave up too much clout and that's why it's not getting
  more aid?

  Heintz:  There seemed to be more concern about the commitment
  of western assistance programs on the issue of Chernobyl than
  there was any sense of concern or possible resentment about
  not supporting Ukraine after having agreed to the destruction
  of the nuclear military force.

  CET:  What kinds of concerns do western aid donors have about
  Chernobyl and how is Ukraine trying to alleviate those

  Heintz:  The major concern is that the west is putting a lot of
  pressure on Ukraine to close Chernobyl because of the concerns
  about its safety.  Ukraine has two concerns: one that it's an
  extremely expensive process.  They're afraid that the amount
  of funds available from the west to support the
  decommissioning of the reactors won't be adequate to the task.
  The problem is it's very hard to estimate how much it'll cost.
  The second level of concern is to make sure there are
  adequate sources of energy to replace the loss of the nuclear
  power.  That's dependent on the west and continued western
  support and also dependent on Russia which supplies all of
  Ukraine's fossil fuels, oil and natural gas.  It's a very
  complicated issue.  The Ukrainians are afraid they're going to
  be left holding the bag on Chernobyl.  They realize it's a
  risky situation.  I think they're committed to closing it
  down.  They want to feel they have reliable partners in the

  CET:  So that particular issue, Chernobyl, is still under
  discussion, no agreements have been reached?

  Heintz:  Not yet, but I did detect a lot of optimism in Kiev at
  the end of last week.  People were beginning to think an
  agreement could be reached in the very near future.

  CET:  How near?

  Heintz:  It could even be in the next couple of weeks from what
  I understand.

* CET On-Line - copyright (c) 1995 Word Up! Inc. All rights reserved.
  This publication may be freely forwarded, archived, or
  otherwise distributed in electronic format only so long as
  this notice, and all other information contained in this
  publication is included.  For-profit distribution of this
  publication or the information contained herein is strictly
  prohibited.  For more information, contact the publishers.

A tovabbterjesztest a New York-i szekhelyu Magyar Emberi Jogok
Alapitvany tamogatja.

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Reposting is supported by Hungarian Human Rights Foundation News
and Information Service.

+ - Hungarian Office of NATO - Newsletter nr.7 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

Budapest 1241, Pf. 181. Tel: (36-1)262-1920 Fax: (36-1)264-9623

Foreign Policy Debate in the Hungarian Parliament

 On February 22nd 1995, a foreign policy debate was held in the Hungarian
Parliament. Laszlo Kovacs, the Minister for Foreign Affairs gave an account
of  the political and security situation in the region, and within this of
Hungary. Concerning the priorities of Hungarian foreign policy, the minister
stressed that the emphasis had not changed, continuity of policy is being
ensured and Hungary is approaching  NATO, the EU and the WEU at the same time.

Kovacs stated that in the last seven months the country came closer to the
European institutions, where our partners are treating us as potential
members. At the same time, it would be desirable to have a defined time-scale
and set of requirements for membership, so that the decision to allow new
members could happen on a country by country basis, as opposed to group of
Since the arrival in office of the new government, the minister drew attention
particularly to the improvement of both Hungarian/Slovak and Hungarian/Romanian
relations. The basic treaties  are being debated at all levels at this present
time. The signing of those treaties is seen by the government as, on the one
hand, a useful tool in balancing relations, and on the other as being
favourable to the Hungarian minorities living outside of Hungary. If the
exercise of stipulating minority rights in a bilateral agreement proves to
be successful, then  international legal obligations will become political
obligations with the signing of the  European framework document. According
to the Minister, Hungarian foreign policy must evidence great care, moderation
and tolerance as regards our neighbours and everything must be done in the
interests of solidifying the relations.

Matyas Eorsi, (Free Democrats) Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on
Foreign Affairs, stated that there are no serious arguments within the
coalition government as concerns foreign policy. The Alliance of Free
Democrats is satisfied with the handling of foreign affairs and the
requirements of the coalition are being met. He did however express his
opinion that the opposition's claim that the government does not take into
account the interests of the Hungarian minority abroad, was a dangerous claim.

The spokesmen of the opposition parties criticised the government's foreign
policy, especially what concerns the neighbouring states  and the basic treaty
issue. They wanted an answer as to why the government does not deal  with the
representatives of the minorities abroad. Lajos Fur, the Chairman of the
Hungarian Democratic Forum saw the issue of the minority as one of European
security and that it would be a crime to sacrifice their interests for
European integration.
Zsolt Nemeth, (Young Democrats) criticised the government's so-called
'smiling diplomacy' and said that the basic treaties were unnecessary
since they do not serve the stability of Europe.
Agnes Maczo, (Independent Smallholders), called upon historical precedents,
and quoting previous Hungarian statesmen and writers,  strongly criticised
current foreign policy.
Laszlo Surjan (Christian Democrats) encouraged agreement among the opposition
in expressing its desire to be more involved in the process of decisionmaking.

The Prime Minister, Gyula Horn, also entered  into the debate stating that
the government intends to take the process of joining both NATO and the EU,
to its logical conclusion. In his opinion, the majority of the internal
conditions, such as the rule of law, parliamentary democracy and the
guaranteeing of human rights, are already given. The process of political
and legal harmonisation is in  progress. At the same time Horn emphasised
that the government utilises all the possible tools in its possession in
order to support and aid the realisation of the interests of those Hungarians
who live outside of the country. In connection with the treaties, the PM
stressed that this issue is about framework documents, which neither replace
the European Council's document on the protection of minorities, nor the
previous documents issued by the EU. In reply to the opposition critique
of the treaties, Horn said that the government had consulted with the
parties and groups of the national minorities in the neighbouring countries.

The PM was of the opinion that Hungary can  enter the structures of the
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation in the year 1996 and also begin talks
at the same time on membership with the EU. One of the important
prerequisites of this is that the debated issues be resolved, since
neither NATO, nor the EU, nor the WEU want to import the tensions of
the region into their structures. He said that it would be inexcusable
for Hungary to miss this opportunity of joining  European Union and NATO.

Consensus amongst the six parties of parliament was shown most clearly on
the issue of the importance of European integration as a whole. In this
area, the views of the government and the opposition were most alike on
matters of security policy. Most of the objections, however, were related
to the issue of the Hungarian minority.

Public Debate Organised by German Foundation

The Friedrich Ebert Foundation organised a seminar in connection with the
parliamentary events,  involving specialists and interest groups related
to the field. Presentations were heard   from a government official and
an opposition MP.

Istvan Szent-Ivanyi, Political State Secretary of the Ministry for Foreign
Affairs, stated that the political forces in the country are moving towards
consensus as far as foreign policy is concerned. The three basic priorities
remain: commitment to European integration, relations with neighbouring
states, and the issue of the Hungarian minorities.

The State Secretary did, however, say that the issue of consensus had
somewhat become a fetish among politicians. In the other democracies of
the West, consensus is not always achieved. Hungarian foreign policy is
limited in the possibilities afforded to it and its sphere of manoeuvring
is also restricted. This is felt both by the government and the opposition.
The existence of debate in parliament over these issues does not mean that
any dramatic development has taken place which affects matters severely.
Although the opinion of the minorities abroad is important with reference
to the basic treaties, they cannot be allowed to exercise veto rights,
stated the State Secretary.

Gyorgy Csoti, (Hungarian Democratic Forum) from the Opposition, and Deputy
Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, opposed the previous view, saying
that progress is not being made towards consensus. Actually the opposite is
true. The views of the opposition and the coalition are separating. As proof
of this he quoted the PM's speech in which he said that Hungary is to
subordinate all issues to the priory of Western integration. This, in his
opinion, means that the interests of the Hungarian minorities are therefore
'placed on the back-burner'.

He also stated that the treaties with Romania and Slovakia should not be
signed if the legitimate  representative of Hungarian minorities do not
agree with their content.

A tovabbterjesztest a New York-i szekhelyu Magyar Emberi Jogok
Alapitvany tamogatja.

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           [*]   [*]  [*]   [*]  [*]   [*] [*]

Reposting is supported by Hungarian Human Rights Foundation News
and Information Service.

+ - Hungarian Office of NATO - Newsletter nr.8 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

March 1995
Budapest 1241, Pf. 181. Tel: (36-1)262-1920 Fax: (36-1)264-9623

Experts Meet to Evaluate the December 1994 OSCE Conference

The Budapest Institute for Strategic and Defence Studies, in collaboration
with the French Academy of Peace and International Security, held a one day
conference on 3rd March 1995. The aim of the conference was to bring together
specialists on the CSCE process and individuals involved in its executive
bodies to discuss in one forum how the events at the end of last year have
effected the organisation and the international climate.

Among those present, were Istvan Gyarmati, Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE,
Prof. Victor-Yves Ghebali, renowned CSCE specialist, Rudolf Joo, former
Hungarian State Secretary of Defence and Nicolas Mettra, the Deputy Head
of the French OSCE Mission in Vienna. Debate was lively and opinions differed
as to the future role of the organisation.

The Chairman-in-Office gave an account of his experiences in being involved
with the crisis in Chechnya and the OSCE missions in Moldova and Nagorno-
Karabakh. The main drive of Mr. Gyarmati's presentation was an emphasis of
the new cooperative nature of conflict management, in contrast to the
confrontational approach that the world was previously used to.

A detailed evaluation of the actual events of  the Budapest meeting was
given by Prof. Ghebali, who saw the main event of the conference as the
change from CSCE to OSCE, meaning an actual international organisation as
opposed to an amorphous institutional process. He did however warn of the
possibility that there is a danger of the new structure laying in a quasi
limbo until the necessary model for functioning can be formulated at the
1996 Lisbon Summit.

Former State Secretary Joo, during the panel discussion gave a detailed
picture of how the High Commissioner for National Minorities has been able
to tangibly assist in the easing of ethnic tensions in the region, most
especially with regard to the plight of the Hungarian ethnic minority in
The day's events were added to be the interesting angle of Nicolas Mettra's
piece on what the European Union's aims were for the Budapest summit. These
were detailed as the enhancement of the CSCE as a crisis prevention organ,
to keep the CSCE as a forum for the discussion of security issues and
thirdly to enhance its institutional framework.

Lastly a provocative view was forwarded by Igor Toporovski, Director of
the Moscow Institute of World Policy Studies as regards the Russian attitude
towards the OSCE and to its involvement within the CIS region,  which he
ruled out, due to the fact that the conflicts in this region are primarily
political in nature and not ethnic or religious.

The full texts of the presentations and a summary of the debates overall will
be published in English and Hungarian by the Institute for Strategic and
Defence Studies, sometime in late March.

High-Level Hungarian-Russian Meeting

On Monday 6th March, Gyula Horn, the Hungarian Prime Minister arrived in
Moscow for a two day consultation with President Boris Yeltsin and Viktor
During the talks with the President, both sides were in agreement that the
process of Euro-Atlantic integration was a long-term one, in which the
countries wanting to take part have to satisfy the conditions of membership
in given organisations. PM Horn emphasised Hungary's intentions towards the
bodies of Euro-Atlantic integration. At the same time he underlined that
Russian security interests need to be acknowledged. The PM underlined that
conflicts of the region and those of the world cannot be solved without
the participation of Russia.

The Russian side expressed its strong belief that the question of gaining
NATO membership is a sovereign decision of Hungary which does not effect
the bilateral relations between the two countries. PM Horn expressed his
hope that NATO can stabilise the Central European region.
President Yeltsin said it is necessary to create  all-encompassing
organisations for European security and cooperation.

Both sides stated that there are no political problems or obstacles within
the relations of the two countries. During the Prime Ministerial talks,
there came the opportunity to exchange documents concerning the 1991 treaty
on friendship and cooperation, which had now been ratified.

During the rest of the consultations, agreements were also reached regarding
the former Soviet debt. Russia will deliver military technology and weaponry
for the value of 300 million USD to Hungary.

Survey Results

Marketing Centrum, a Hungarian polling institute, has compiled a report on
the opinion of the general public as concerns the nation's security policy.
The poll took place between January 6th and 10th of this year, at 100 points
around the country where citizens were approached completely at random.

The largest group of replies, 45%, felt that peace is most threatened by
ethnic conflicts resulting from the collapse of previous federal state
systems.  48% of the populous see the Yugoslav crisis as a source of further
danger, while 43% see the successor states of the Soviet Union as a possible
Of all those asked, 16% were against joining NATO, 43% of these individuals
favouring neutrality. 75% of those asked, knew what NATO was, while 76% felt
that within a few years Hungary could join the organisation, and 70% of these
expected membership to increase the security of the country.

A tovabbterjesztest a New York-i szekhelyu Magyar Emberi Jogok
Alapitvany tamogatja.

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Reposting is supported by Hungarian Human Rights Foundation News
and Information Service.

+ - VoA - Magyarorszag/egyetemistak (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

type=correspondent report
title=Hungary Students (s)
byline=Stephen Bos
voiced at:

Intro:  About 10-thousand Hungarian students demonstrated in
Budapest Wednesday to protest the government's plan to charge
fees for higher education.  Stephen Bos reports from Budapest
Hungarian Minister of Finance Lajos Bokros tried to explain this
policy to an angry crowd.

Text:  Hungarian Finance Minister Lajos Bokros was interrupted
several times as he tried to explain the government's policy to
the angry crowd.  The finance minister was jeered and shouted
down by students when attempting to explain why the socialist
government plans to put an end to the policy of free higher

Mr. Bokros told the crowd that later this year students will have
to pay a monthly fee of about two-thousand forints or 17 dollars
as part of the government's plan to reduce state spending
announced March 12th.

During the weekend prime minister Gyula Horn said in a nationwide
T-V address that his government  cannot  afford to spend
27-percent of the country's gross domestic product on social
welfare programs, as had been done during 40 years of communist

The latest opinion polls show that almost 70-percent of
Hungarians are opposed to the government's austerity measures.
In addition to curtailing student benefits, the government plan
would severely restrict state payments to thousands of middle
class families.  (Signed)


22-Mar-95 3:20 pm est (2020 utc)

source: Voice of America

A tovabbterjesztest a New York-i szekhelyu Magyar Emberi Jogok
Alapitvany tamogatja.

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           [*]   [*]  [*]   [*]  [*]  [*]  [*]
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Reposting is supported by Hungarian Human Rights Foundation News
and Information Service.

+ - cet - 23 March 1995 (mind) VÁLASZ  Feladó: (cikkei)

Thursday, 23 March 1995
Volume 2, Issue 59


  An estimated 20,000 Hungarian college students protested across
  the country yesterday against the government's plan to
  introduce an $18-per-month tuition fee.  About 10,000
  banner-waving students marched through the streets of Budapest
  to the finance ministry, where they presented their demands to
  Finance Minister Lajos Bokros.  They want the government to
  reverse its plans to start charging the tuition fee this fall.
  The tution is part of sweeping austerity measures announced
  11 days ago that include steep cuts in family support payments
  and a sharp devaluation of the forint.  About 20 percent of
  Hungary's students fall into a low income category, and won't
  have to pay the fee.  The government says the rest of the
  country's students should do their part to help Hungary reduce
  its budget deficit.  Bokros tried to explain that to jeering
  students, saying they pay more every month for cigarettes than
  the $18 tution fee.

  "We are going to save this country from state bankruptcy.  I
  would like everyone to add this symbolic amount of 2,000

  But it's the symbolic nature of the payment that really wories
  students, who fear the price will rise, possibly as soon as
  next year.  According to the Central Statistics Office, in
  1993 it cost more than $3,000 to educate a student.  That
  would hardly be dented by the $180 annual tuition.  Under
  these circumstances, medical student Orsolya Romi says the
  tuition just doesn't make sense.

  "We are too poor to pay this.  I don't think it's good for the
  university to get money from the students.  It's not enough
  and it's not effective."

  Many students say the tuition wouldn't be so bad if student
  loans were available.  Tamas Kovacs is vice president of the
  National Union of Students.

  "We had an agreement with the government that we the students
  will pay tuition from 1996 September if there will be a
  Hungarian development act.  A new act on higher education.  We
  agreed on these conditions and they broke this agreement."

  Kovacs says negotiations will continue with government officials
  next week.  But if these aren't successful students say they
  might protest again next month.  Or they might not pay the
  tuition at all. --David Fink

  Poland's ruling left-wing coalition is trying to implement an
  austerity plan concerning pensions.  But it suspects the
  opposition to its proposal will come from politicians.  Under
  the government's program, Poles would be offered incentives to
  contribute to private pension plans.  Benefits from government
  pensions would be made more dependent on premium payments,
  although the government would offer a minimum level of
  pensions for all.  Pension and disability payments would also
  be linked to inflation.  Polish President Lech Walesa has
  already said he'll oppose that part of the government's plan.
  The short-term pain the rest of the proposals would inflict
  are sure to leave the ruling coaltion open to more criticism
  in this presidential election year.  The austerity plan
  involves 15 to 18 bills which should win cabinet approval next
  month and go before parliament for a vote late this year.


  Hungary's MALEV airlines says it wants to make Budapest its new
  East European air cargo hub.  Budapest would replace Vienna,
  which has long sold itself as the gateway to the East.  But
  MALEV Air Cargo Chief Ferenc Kovacs says Budapest is more
  centrally located than Vienna.  Kovacs says MALEV is most
  interested in connecting former communist countries with
  Western Europe New York and the Middle East.  But there is one
  problem with Budapest's Ferihegy airport: MALEV has limited
  cargo capacity there.


  Current events in the travel industry
  By David Fondler

  New travel agreements between Hungary and Japan, and Hungary
  and Italy were in the news this past week, as were deals
  involving the renovation of Prague's airport.

  The Hungarian airline MALEV has been running a summer charter
  service between Budapest and Japan for a couple of years now.
  Mainly, the service has been bringing Japanese business people
  and tourists to Central Europe, using Budapest as a hub for
  package travel deals around the region.  Chris Warrington runs
  ESO Leisure and Executive Travel in Budapest.  He says there
  have been some changes in the agreement between Malev and the
  Japanese government:

  "Capacity has been increased, the agreement has been signed for
  57 charters which could operate between the two countries.
  And the aircraft that'll be used on this is the Boeing 767 of
  which MALEV have the wide-bodied twin-jet aircraft, using this
  to take 20,000 passengers between Japan and Hungary."

  But Warrington says so far, this service has been primarily one-
  way, as few Hungarian-based travellers have flown to Japan.
  That's because Japan is an expensive destination, and travel
  from there to other parts of Asia is also not cheap.  Other
  developments for MALEV this week: alterations to its travel
  agreement with the Italian airline, Alitalia, which owns a
  quarter of the Hungarian airline.  Warrington says among the
  changes: more Italian destinations for MALEV:

  "I think points that will probably be served would be Venice
  especially, possibly Florence and maybe down into Sicily."

  But with those additional destinations comes more competition.
  Part of the changes to the agreement involve bringing in other
  airlines to offer flights between Italy and Hungary.
  Warrington says this is standard in airline agreements in the

  Within the European Community, which Italy is a part of, the
  European Union, airlines now can operate on an ad-hoc basis
  and on a scheduled basis between points in two other countries
  within the community; ie: British Airways can operate flights
  between Paris and Rome."

  And this is the kind of competition that MALEV and other Central
  European national carriers can expect if their home countries
  join the EU.

  On the ground, we see changes on tap for Prague's international
  airport, with the Czech government announcing yesterday that
  it'll back the financing of the terminal's expansion.  Under
  the new deal, the Czech Airport Authority will join the French
  firm Bouygues and British Aerospace in a $200 million
  renovation of Prague's airport terminal.  The agreement
  replaces a deal which was scrapped last December, because the
  Czech transport ministry felt the financing requirements were
  too strict.  But putting the business of the deal aside,
  Warrington says the renovations are necessary:

  "They need a new airport terminal quite dramatically. the
  traffic has grown quite considerably into Prague itself over
  the past couple of years.  If they want to continue to bring
  people in and have return visits and make people more
  comfortable in the way they come in and out of the country,
  then this is a necessity for the Czech government to get this
  up and running."

  The new Prague terminal is expected to more than double the
  airport's passenger capacity to almost 5 million people by the
  year 2000.


  By David Fondler

  Hungary is looking at minority issues both at home and abroad.
  Budapest just signed a basic treaty with Bratislava covering
  rights for the substantial Hungarian minority in Slovakia.  A
  similar agreement with Romania is in the works.  At home,
  Hungary is dealing with the issue of minority rights for the
  non-Hungarians within its borders, sometimes with the help of

  With the flourish of a fiddle, seven stomping couples kicked
  off the sixth annual Kalyi Jag International Folklore
  Festival, which began Monday night, and runs all this week in
  Budapest.  Most of the performers are from Hungary, but that
  doesn't mean they're Hungarian.  Romanian, Bulgarian, Serbo-
  Croatian, Greek, German and Yiddish bands will all grace the
  stage, along with Gypsy troupes which have intersected all
  these other cultures.

  Kalyi Jag is a Gypsy, or Romany, cultural organization, born
  from the Roma musical group of the same name in 1991.  Gusztav
  Varga, an ethnic Romany, is president of the Kalyi Jag
  Association, and founder of the festival:

  "The importance of this festival is that there are big problems,
  both economically and culturally for the minorities within and
  outside Hungary.  And promoting culture is a way of fighting,
  of making a demonstration against racism and promoting the
  idea of tolerance."

  Varga says he got the idea for the festival just as Hungary was
  emerging from communism.  He says he saw the country focusing
  on the political rights of the country's minorities, but not
  their cultural interests.  And Varga feels understanding
  culture is essential for good minority relations.

  Peter Szabo lives in Hungary, but leads a Romanian dance troupe
  which performed at the festival.  He says the experience of
  his group illustrates some of the basic minority issues both
  in and out of Hungary:

  "Lots of them are Romanian by nationality, only their
  citizenship is Hungarian because they were born here.  In
  1922, when the borders were established, they remained here
  and Hungarians remained on the other side.  But they stick with
  their mother tongue."

  Preservation of mother languages and cultures are just some of
  the points covered in basic treaty negotiations.  Csaba
  Tabajdi is Hungary's state secretary for minority affairs and
  helped open the festival.  He says the Hungarian government's
  concern with protecting the rights of Hungarians abroad should
  give it a certain empathy for minorities within Hungary.  Last
  year, Budapest enacted a minority self-government law,
  granting some autonomy to Hungary's ethnic communities.  But
  Tabajdi isn't sure if this law will be used as a model by
  Hungary's neighbors:

  "I don't think so that this act on minorities may have a certain
  influence on minorities living outside the borders.  It
  depends on the political willingness of the political elites
  of neighboring countries."

  But Tabajdi does think that events like Kalyi Jag can bridge the
  gap in cultural understanding.  It certainly has worked for
  one week on a stage Budapest, where multi-colored,
  multi-cultured groups of performers have learned to sing with
  one voice.


* CET On-Line - copyright (c) 1995 Word Up! Inc. All rights reserved.
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A tovabbterjesztest a New York-i szekhelyu Magyar Emberi Jogok
Alapitvany tamogatja.

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