- 15 Dec 2015
- IOC News
Celebrating 120 Years of Olympic History in Hungary
IOC President Thomas Bach joined the 120th anniversary celebrations of the Hungarian National Olympic Committee in Budapest today.
Speaking at the Extraordinary General Assembly of the Hungarian NOC held to mark the occasion, President Bach highlighted the strong sporting tradition of Hungary, and the historical ties between the country and the Olympic Movement.
In his address, President Bach pointed to the crucial role played by the Hungarian, Ferenc Kemény, in the organisation of the 1894 Congress that revived the Olympic Games and created the IOC. He also praised Hungary’s strong sporting record at the Olympic Games, saying that the country’s athletes have always been a source of pride for the nation. “Hungary holds a remarkable record, namely being the country that has won more medals than any other country that has never hosted the Olympic Games,” he said. “This is a very impressive record, and Hungary can rightly be proud of such sporting success.”
With regard to the candidature of Budapest to host the Olympic Games in 2024, President Bach said he was impressed how quickly the Hungarian capital had embraced the principles of Olympic Agenda 2020. “In line with Olympic Agenda 2020, sustainability, feasibility and legacy form the cornerstones of Budapest’s candidature. The reforms of Olympic Agenda 2020 make it easier for countries like Hungary to use the Olympic Games as a catalyst for their own long-term development needs.” He said that Budapest was a strong contender, and that the candidature process for the Olympic Games in 2024 would be a fascinating contest.
Earlier, President Bach met Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. They discussed the role of sport in Hungarian society. The Prime Minister highlighted the many investments into Hungary’s sport facilities and emphasised that sport is an important part of education, with physical activity on the curriculum every day in schools.
President Bach also met János Áder, the President of Hungary. They discussed the importance of sustainability and the involvement of the Hungarian President in the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris. They also discussed the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
During his visit, President Bach joined young athletes at a local fencing school and met many famous Olympians from Hungary.