President Klaus Iohannis accompanied by his wife, Carmen Iohannis, started his second visit to Italy so far in his term Thursday at noon. The first part of the visit was to Milan. The attraction of the ‘economic capital’ of the Peninsula being, of course, Expo Milano 2015 that opened its gates in 1 May, where Romania participates with a National Pavilion.
Expo 2015 welcomed us with unusual warmth and a sea of people who came to visit the exhibition stands of the 145 participating states, including the Romanian pavilion.
The exhibition stand is a modern reinterpretation of a traditional Romanian house mainly made of wood and glass, with a thatch roof.
During his visit to Romania’s pavilion, President Iohannis was welcomed and accompanied by Georgian Ghervasie, the general commissioner of Romania at Expo Milano 2015.
The head of state was greeted according to Romanian tradition by two young girls dressed in folk costumes, who offered him to taste bread and salt.
Iohannis declared himself pleasantly impressed by the experience, remarking that although not an imposing appearance through size, the pavilion impresses through its concept, which seamlessly fits with the theme of the world exhibition.
“I visited Romania’s pavilion, I discussed with the commissioner of the exhibition our presence at Expo Milano 2015, and I am pleasantly impressed that we, Romania, managed this time again to present ourselves very well, with a pavilion that although not impressive through size, impresses through its concept which, in my opinion, integrates very well with the theme of the exhibition, which is related to the earth that feeds us and its sustainable exploitation,” said Iohannis.
He mentioned that Romania’s exhibition space illustrates through movies and images the Romanians’ understanding of the concept of sustainability, but “not just as regards food, but also culture, and everyday life.”
“This combination between an ultramodern presentation on large flat screens and architecture that pleasantly brings to mind the rural architecture of the Delta is a combination I like. (…) The target of the exhibition is 20 million visitors and the tickets sold for the next period already near 11 million. On my way here I saw a very large number of visitors who are eager to see what happens in the world. I hope that an impressive number thereof get to see what happens in Romania too, in the most positive sense,” Iohannis added.
Afterwards, Romania’s President has also visited on Thursday the pavilions of Italy and the Vatican from the Expo Milano 2015, after which he had a short talk with Giuseppe Sala, the Commissioner general of the world exhibition.
Being asked what he thinks of the theme chosen by the Expo Milano 2015 – ‘Feeding the planet, energy for life,’ Klaus Iohannis said it is a theme ‘as interesting, both through simplicity and being very close to each of us.’
‘The message I’ve got is that we should take care of the earth the way it takes care of us,’ the Romanian head of state said.
According to the website of the event, the pavilion of Italy, the organizing country of the Universal Exhibition 2015, is presenting under the slogan ‘Nursery’ Italian elements of excellence: the national culture and traditions in connection with the food and feed, characterized through the high quality of the raw materials and finished products Made in Italy.
The first day of the President’s visit to Italy ended with the meeting he had with the representatives of the Romanian community in northern Italy.
The crucial moment of President Iohannis’s visit to Italy will, of course, be represented by the meetings at Vatican on Friday and Saturday, where the head of the Romanian state will be received by and have talks with the Sovereign Pontiff, Pope Francis.
“I will address an invitation to Pope Francis to visit Romania. I have already discussed the matter last night with His Beatitude Daniel and the Romanian Orthodox Church [BOR] is one hundred per cent in support. Our wish is that the visit takes place in 2018, which is a very important year for us, for we celebrate 100 years of modern Romania. Romania has, through its history and culture, the vocation of a special relation with the Holy See. Our wish it to strengthen this excellent cooperation that we have developed over the past 25 years,” President Iohannis emphasized during the statement he made before departing, at the Henri Coanda Airport.
Italian Embassy in Bucharest: We are thrilled President Iohannis gives special attention to this international event
The Embassy of Italy in Bucharest wants to congratulate the President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, on his visit to EXPO Milan 2015 today, where Romania is also present with a national pavilion, the Italian Embassy notes in a press release.
‘We are very thrilled that President Iohannis gives special attention to this international event that appears to have a special importance due to the participation of over 130 different countries and focus on a theme concerning the entire planet, which is food.
The presence of the Romanian pavilion, also intensely wanted by Italy, has a special importance within the exhibition and we want that to allow the country to show its natural and food resources.
President Iohannis visits Milan a few weeks after his first official visit to Italy (27-28 April 2015), when he had very fruitful meetings with both the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, and the President of the Council of Ministers, Matteo Renzi. Italy is the only country to have been visited twice by the president since the beginning of his term, which is a tangible sign of the intensity of Italian-Romanian relations that will hopefully be re-launched after the meeting at EXPO Milan’, reads the press statement of the Embassy of Italy in Romania.