AHF eNews December 30th, 2004

Under new Management... See the success! Go to www.americanhungarianfederation.org
JOIN NOW! It's time to work together. Next Generation - We Want You! JOIN AHF online!

Can't see this message in full color? Go the AHF Bookstore / Newsletter Archive or [DOWNLOAD]

AHF wishes all a prosperous, peaceful New Year!

AHF Top Stories
12/23/2004 - AHF sponsors "Congressional Hungarian American Caucus Staffer Appreciation Day" on Capitol Hill. The Center for Hungarian American Congressional Relations (CHACR) helped AHF organize the event aimed at thanking congressional staffers that represent the now 25-member strong Hungarian American Caucus for their support for Hungarian causes. Over 60 guests sampled delicious Hungarian cuisine from Maximilian's and wine from our newest member, Monarchia. [more]

11/24/2004 - AHF issues call ("felhivas") to Hungarians to vote "YES" on dual-citizenship for Hungarians beyond the borders. "If someone desires Hungarian citizenship, we should be pleased as our number has grown by at least one in a Carpathian Basin where our numbers are in decline. But this is a referendum for which there was no need. We shouldn't divide "within-borders" from "outside-border" Hungarians, nor prevent a Hungarian stuck behind borders that were changed around him from claiming his citizenship." Click to download the "Felhivas" [here] or read [more].

10/30/2004 - AHF Releases Statement on Vojvodina Violence: VOJVODINA: “Drop dead Hungarians”

In the last six months, non-Serbs, including members of Vojvodina’s 300,000-strong Hungarian minority, have been harassed and assaulted and their cemeteries and churches have been desecrated in a wave of physical violence, vandalism and anti-Semitism. [download full article] or [read more] about Serbian intimidation of Hungarians in Vojvodina.

[GO to all AHF news]

NOTE: We use this list SPARINGLY. However, if you want to be removed from this list, please send a mail to bryan.dawson@webenetics.com with REMOVE in the subject line, and we will honor your request.

Featured Link: Do you think you know something about famous Hungarians? Think again! See "Nobel Prize Winners and Famous Hungarians" on www.thehungarypage.com

 > Featured New Member
Monarchia Wines
One of the great Hungarian business success stories in recent months is Monarchia Wines (MMI) which brings hand-crafted, artisan wines from the premier family estates of Hungary as well as small production wines from the country's top regions. To give Monarchia a unique profile, a team of experts in Hungary provides the critical quality control. So successful has Monarchia's business model been, they have almost single-handedly changed the face and reputation on Hungarian wines around the world in but a few months. See an article on PRWeb

In Memoriam

Jeno Andras Szeredas, Hungarian political activist and Senator, 1956 Freedom Fighter, Founder of the Freedom Fighters Federation in the United States, poet and artist of rare talent died quietly in his sleep at his daughter's home in Connecticut on November 30. He had just
celebrated his 90th birthday.[more]

Other International News
Hungarian Parties Remain Very Close
Angus Reid - December 28th: CPOD Global Scan
The conservative Citizens Party (Fidesz) is barely leading the political scene in Hungary, according to a poll by Gallup. 25 per cent of respondents would vote for the opposition Fidesz in the next general election, a three per cent drop since November. The ruling Socialist Party (MSZP) is second with 23 per cent, followed by the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ) and the Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF) with two per cent. In August, Socialist prime minister Peter Medgyessy tendered his resignation after a cabinet dispute. On Aug. 25, the Socialists chose businessman and sports minister Ferenc Gyurcsany as the new head of government.
Polling Data
If an election were held today, what party would you support?
  Hungarian Citizens Party (Fidesz)
Dec. 2004 25%
Nov. 2004 28%
Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP)
Dec. 2004 23%
Nov. 2004 25%
Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ)
Dec. 2004 2%
Nov. 2004 3%
Hungarian Democratic Forum (MDF)
Dec. 2004 2%
Nov. 2004 1%
Source: Gallup Hungary
Methodology: Telephone interviews to 1,003 Hungarian voters, conducted from Dec. 1 to Dec. 9, 2004. Margin of error is 3.2 per cent.

[BD - Did you know a Hungarian firm was Australia's largest commercial ship repairer? And it's hiring Hungarians! Way to go! See this article >>]
20,000 foreign workers fill skills gap
Brad Norington - December 28, 2004: The Australian

A COMPANY that has flown in trained welders from Hungary to work at its dockyards in NSW and Queensland has complained of a chronic shortage of skilled labour that is forcing Australian companies to hire large numbers of foreign "guest workers" for local jobs.

Forgacs Dockyards, Australia's biggest commercial ship repairer, has employed 20 Hungarian welders on long-stay visas at its engineering operations after failing to find enough local trade workers. [more]

Hungary's Troops Come Home
PolitInfo.com - Dec 23, 2004

Hungary's 300-member contingent deployed in Iraq has returned home after parliament refused to extend its mission. The troops arrived in Hungary on Wednesday and Thursday. The Hungarian government had sought to extend the mission to March 2005 but the center-right opposition in parliament voted down the plan.

Hungary lost one soldier during the transportation unit's deployment to Iraq, which began in August 2003. Hungary plans to send 150 soldiers as part of a NATO-led mission to train Iraq security forces next year. Deployment under a NATO umbrella does not require parliamentary approval.

This article uses material from VOA.

Hungary Ratifies EU Constitution
BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) by the Baku Sun

Hungary’s parliament on Monday ratified the European Union’s constitution, becoming the second EU country to approve the draft charter.

Hungarian lawmakers voted 322 to 12 in favor of the constitution. Eight lawmakers abstained, and another 44 parliamentary deputies did not take part in the balloting.

The constitution is set to take effect Nov. 1, 2006, if all the EU countries have ratified it.

[BD - I wonder who was the lucky reporter verifying these statistics!  >>]

More sex please, we're Hungarian
Budapest Sun, December 23.

DESPITE the low demographic indicators, Hungarian couples are doing more than the European average to raise the sales of contraceptives.

According to an online poll by SSL Hungary Kft, Hungarians are ranked third in Europe (behind France and Greece) in practicing the most sex per year.

The survey shows that, on average, Hungarians meet under the sheets 131 times a year, compared to the Greeks' annual tally of 133 times and the French's annual 137 encounters. [more]

Hungarian Economy set to grow by 4%
By Kester Eddy - Budpapest Sun

The Hungarian economy, set to expand at around 4% both this year and in 2005, is back onto a sustainable, export-led, growth track.

Inflation, which spiked last spring at 7.6% due to one-off tax increases incurred from joining the European Union, will drop to around 4.5% next year, and although more effort must be put into cutting government spending, the budget deficit will drop to 4.7% of GDP in 2005, from 5.3% this year.

It is true that many mid-sized exporters are having trouble, but that is due to the strong forint, and that is because the central bank has maintained interest rates too high for too long. Still, with unemployment at 6.1%, many countries in "old" Europe are envious of Hungary's position. [more]

A Budapest Christmas
By Esther Vécsey - Budapest Sun

 THE traditional Hungarian Christmas Season is the greatest family event of the year. [more]

Join online!

[ GO to all AHF news]