Monday, August 20, 2012

Looking eastwards

The popularity of the Kurultaj Festival in recent years has shown that Hungarians are becoming increasingly interested in their ancient cultural roots. The festival brings together the modern day peoples of the Hun-Turkic-Hungarian peoples. Hungarians are now also looking eastwards for new friends and alliances.

Recent trade missions by the conservative Fidesz government have been looking for new trade partners in the east. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán recently visited Kazakhstan for new trade agreements. The meeting was hailed as highly successful. Economic deals and agreements were also signed with China as well as Chinese diplomats visited Budapest only months ago.

Much of the revival in ancient Hungarian culture and the look eastwards has to do with the recent conflicts with the European Union. Hungarians feel as if they were badly mistreated by the EU and their western counterparts. Hungary basically has no markets for its goods and products in the EU. The EU even dictates to Hungary on how much she can produce and what she does with her products in her own country. Hungary has now found it more beneficial to look eastwards for new markets and new friendships. Apparently, Hungarian agricultural goods and products are in high demand in eastern countries.

The Kurultaj festival highlights the fact that sometimes it's good to return to your roots for your future. It's no doubt that the festival will increase in popularity over the coming years and that the conservative government of Hungary will continue to look eastwards to forge new alliances and trade agreements with eastern countries. Hungary must keep her options open to secure her economic well-being. Membership in the European Union has its advantages but recent events have shown Hungarians that the EU is not a solution to their problems. It has actually increased their problems by creating political tension. Prospects in the east are now looking more attractive by the day.