Memorie.al publishes the unknown history of the representation of the Albanian state in the “Fair of the East”, which since 1929 began to take place every year in Bari, Italy, where traders, farmers and small Albanian industrialists, exhibited goods and products their best as: kerosene, bitumen, timber, wool, dairies, olives, eggs, handicrafts etc. The great interest of the Ministry of National Economy headed by Dhimitër Berat for the Albanian pavilion and the assessments of senior officials of that time for the participation of our country in that important event, which was seen as a “Gate connecting Albania with the West”.
“From everything I have noted, it is easy to think of the great interest that connects the Albanian trader with the Eastern Fair, whether importer or exporter. There he finds a large organized show, it can be said to be two steps away from his country and it is very useful to benefit from the approach to the commercial world that gathers there, from near and far places that interest us equally. All this explains the rapid increase of Albanian exporters who, twenty-two, in 1930, the first year of the Fair, have participated, after four years, in a quantity four times larger. This increased participation of Albanian products, finds the main explanation, as I said, in the importance of trade relations between the two countries, which unites the Adriatic “. This is what the Minister of National Economy, Dhimitër Berati, said in an article written especially for the Magazine of the “East Fair” and published with his authorization from the magazine “Diana” of Tirana in 1934. What was it? The East Fair ”, where did it take place and who participated in that important event? Regarding these and others, Memorie.al has selected and is publishing in this article some of the articles of the magazine “Diana” that was published in Tirana during the period of the Zog Monarchy, which has dedicated entire pages to that important event for Albania, not only in the economic plan.
Demir Alizoti: Albania and the Bar Fair
“Among those countries that from the beginning of the creation of this important international market, has not failed to represent its products in any annual event, has been, without a doubt, Albania. Our country really as a young state, has shown courage and has not shied away from such a show. This clearly shows that today’s Albania has started and it is moving towards an Occidental civilization led by its leader, with energy and full of will. In the new Albania, a radical development and progress is seen in every branch. It can be said without hiding the right that in recent times or better to say, within the first 10 years of the Zogist regime, Albania, as always, each of its branches, those that form the National Economy, has treated and developed in visibly. Agriculture, which is the basis of the national economy, after representing for Albania the first coefficient of its prosperity, now later with technical instructions, with the distribution of thousands of different tools, with the propagation of seedlings, with the creation of cooperative organizations, etc., has begun to change its primitive state. Likewise, livestock with the measures taken to improve the breed of livestock, to fight diseases, etc., has reached a commendable level. The industry that before 1925 was nothing but a small household industry, today has developed not only from the point of view of improvement from its previous condition, but also new modern industries were created, refineries for oils were created, were taken measures for improving dairy with the creation of modern milk stations, etc. Later, new industries were developed such as soap, wool, furniture, tobacco, bricks, alcohol, beer, cement, etc., which more or less meet the needs of the country. So this rapid development gave our country the opportunity to present every year at the East Fair with various national products.
East Fair; By its typical name, it is understood that this fair reflects the trade policy of the Italian Kingdom in the Orient and aims to promote the products of Italian industry in the Balkans and in the Orient. The creation of this fair, which today has created an interest all over the world, after five manifestations is considered as a fruit of a traditional history for the Bar market. All the different entities of that city; even more so after 1900, they were inspired by such an organism. And so the creation was decided in the right place or rather in the capital of Puglia; for this city from the earliest times has put in communication with its boats not only the cities of the Adriatic, but also of the Orient and that today these areas form the real sphere of trade movement of the above-mentioned Fair. The idea of creating this fair was executed by the fascist Government, and with the decree of October 3, 1929, the wish of the people of that region was realized. This fair, as we said, aims to set in motion all the possibilities for a development and profit agreement between Italy and other countries and even more so between the Balkan, African and Asian markets. And in this way, taking into account the geographical position of Bari, and not only that, but also the importance it has for communication with the above-mentioned countries, the center of this organization was established in that country. So, for Albania, this fair, which from a geographical point of view is so close, especially in the first pier of our country, is of great importance and a little more because the countries that participate there are the most favorable markets for a large part of our export items. In addition, products, especially traders, can be easily and quickly communicated with each other, especially traders, for any agreement. The most pound when looking at our export statistics, it will be found that ¾ of these products enter and exit with the intermediary of the pier, where it takes place from September 6 to September 21 of each year. The above mentioned fair. The Bar Fair year after year had a considerable success and development thus the total area that in 1930 was 115,000 m2. in 1934 it reached 186,000 m2. as well as foreign exports from the 134 of 1930, in 1934 reached 1327 people. So this hints at the importance that this Autonomous Entity has been taking for years, no doubt under the understandable and diligent direction of its honest chairman, Mr. Grand. Uff. Laroca.
The trial of the Minister of National Economy, Dhimitër Berati
“We have the impression that the East Fair occupies, from now on, a place of honor among other older Fairs; The East Fair has known to create at once a tradition that from time to time becomes more concrete and is imposed with greater power “Fiera”, in Albanian it is called “Fair”, but it can be added that this word has something of that religious feeling that is encountered in the original of the “Fairs”, especially in the Balkans, where they are organized near monasteries in the case of some religious holidays. Among those manifestations one goes to honor the Saint who is celebrated, but one also goes to do work; to sell products or to buy. If the East Fair has begun to have a “tradition” of its own, known to those who participate, such a sense of Levantine religiosity must be sought and may, in some way, have its own power. . With greater reason than the best success of the East Fair is also attributed to the adapted place, chosen as the appropriate center. The fair has responded without any flaws, to an obvious need; its organization, on the other hand, has fully rewarded all the demands of such a modern show. Bari, which the Duce’s reason for the “ring of connection between West and East”, has a particularly useful situation to serve as a baking point (meeting point, our note), between the merchants of the West, the Balkans and the East of Near. Equipped with countless communication routes, connected by the most advanced means of transport to the most remote centers, Bari has begun to occupy the importance that once had Triesht (Trieste), as a market for the sale of Balkan products. As far as Albania is concerned, it is especially natural for Bari and its fair to have a first-class importance. Durrës, the main pier of Albania, is connected to Bari by the steamers of the Adriatic Cruise Society, which has set up daily services. Tirana, its capital, is also connected by air communications; three times a week the trim engine of the Rome-Thessaloniki-Athens line touches the airfields of Brindisi and Tirana. It is enough to give a story to understand then, the importance of Bari vis-.-Vis Albanian trade. I really add that, in the total majority of Albanian exports, seventy percent, among these last five years, has been directed from Italy and mainly from the scaffolding of Bari, thus representing a value, in figures of almost thirty million francs. gold. The movement of imports coming from Italy, mainly in transport from Bari, is caught in the same period, in the amount of sixty-four million gold francs, that is close to forty-five percent of the total amount of our imports. Nothing better than these figures can explain the relations that exist between Bari and Albania. Those relationships are not limited to trade. Trade exchanges, relatively extensive, and quite frequent communications, have enlivened all sorts of connections that make Bari the city with which Albanian students find a way to continue their studies, without leaving his country, the patient goes there to recovers, the trader goes there to find a market for the products or to buy others. Albanians easily find their long-established compatriots there; can sing for days the Albanian edition of the very important notebook “La Gazzetta del Mezogiorno” and every evening can listen to the news broadcast in Albanian, from the station of Radio Bar. From all that I have noted, it is easy to think of the great interest that connects the Albanian trader with the Eastern Fair, whether importer or exporter. There he finds a large organized show, it can be said to be two steps away from his country and it is very useful to benefit from the approach to the commercial world that gathers there, from near and far places that interest us equally. All this explains the rapid increase of Albanian exporters who, twenty-two, in 1930, the first year of the Fair, have participated, after four years, in a quantity four times larger. This increased participation of Albanian products, finds the main explanation, as I said, in the importance of trade relations between the two countries, which unites the Adriatic. But it would be a mistake not to take into account the obligatory elements of another nature, which for this are no less fundamental, namely the friendship between the two Peoples living on both shores of the Adriatic and the eventful history of a common importance for both Peoples ”.
Dr. Terenc Toçi: The Bar Fair is a working example for us
“We Albanians should look at the Bar Fair from a high, synthetic point of view. He tells us that goodwill and strong will along with the desire to work work miracles! What has Bari had for fifteen years now? This is where our remark should stop and bring to mind the Albanian progress. In Bari they find the triumph of the work of the people; among us we see that all progress – roads, bridges, palaces, transformations – is the product of an atnuer and ironic Regime, and that private initiative has not played any major activity. So, with the example of Bari, we should also move. We also have our qualities; In America and many parts of Europe, as well as in Egypt, we have shown how good we are at constructive works that honor and elevate our nation in all aspects of life. So, in order to have confidence in ourselves, we must feel it and nurture the Pride of our race! Our fields for a long time will be Agriculture and Livestock! Through these we will show our lord, erecting glorious monuments such as the Bar Fair… And then we will completely win our place in the history of the earth “.
Gino Mazzoni: East Fair a bridge of cooperation and friendship
“It is known that in fascist Italy every Nisiatiov immediately becomes a national and global problem, as well as the East Fair since the first year of his life he reached the targets of international interest. The East Fair is a worldwide manifestation of the courage and determination for the affairs of the Italians, following the high orders, for the appointment of the Mediterranean triangle, under the service of Bari as the head of the bridge with the Orient, for a strong consolidation of friendship in peace. The East Fair is a national affair for international cooperation, a bridge pillar erected to give people and ideas a chance to get closer and understand each other. The East Fair, in its excellent name, expresses the need for work understood in the broadest sense of industrial-agricultural, intellectual – of the Mediterranean basin. The work is expressed in trade opportunities and potentials and in the breadth of trade, being this proof of a rich and opportunistic production and in many cases a guarantee of peace and cooperation between the two peoples. Albania, always present at the East Fair, this year will have a day of its own; very nice initiative. For this merit belongs to the general representative of the Fair in Albania, Mr. Komm. Dr. N. Lorusso Attoma as well as K.T.A.M ”.
N. Lorusso Attoma: Italian-Albanian Treaties and the action of the East Fair
“Albanian participation in the East Fair. – Albania has always been present in all performances of major fair fairs, – has its own special characteristics that deserve to be noted and underlined. When one remembers the millennial tradition of relations between the two shores of the Adriatic, the definition seems clear; “Albania’s Gate to the West”. Represents the amorous recognition by Albanians of the dual function of great importance that Bari has as a player at all times, contributing effectively to the consolidation and development of Italian-Albanian trade relations, which are developed today on a concrete and beneficial cooperation plan. Natural expression for the Albanian production mainly agricultural and livestock, Bari connected to these parts with daily maritime communications represents the pier to which a large part of the Albanian products are sent, which in continuation of the trade agreements that exist between the two States and the facilities provided them, find wide and safe sales in the Italian market. In 1929, at the beginning of the first East Fair, with a very friendly gesture, the Equal Authorities came to Tirana to invite the Albanian Government to participate in the barbaric initiative. And since the first Fair, the Albanian participation has been cordial and enthusiastic. Albanian participation in the Eastern Fair has been placed for years under the auspices of a glorious anniversary of national history: next November 28 marks the 25th anniversary of the proclamation of Albanian independence. A quarter of a century ago in Vlora, the patriot Ismail Qemali and other Albanian patriots raised for the first time the red and black symbol of gained independence, after five centuries of difficult foreign rule, Albania will celebrate this year the historic anniversary with a series of achievements performed in all areas. Near November 28, 1912 is another date written in golden letters in the history of modern Albania: December 24, 1924. This is the date of King Zog’s entry into Tirana at the head of the victorious troops. From 1924 begins the period of true renaissance for Albania. In thirteen years the Zogist regime Albania – kindly aided by Fascist Italy – has been able to carry out and overcome the first difficult stages of reconstruction fatigue by rushing from the path of progress. All Albanian manifestations will be dedicated to future national celebrations. That is why the Albanian salon in the eighth fair – entrusted to the care of comm. Demir Alizoti, deputy, Secretary General of the National Economy – artistically decorated by prof. Scarano – wants to represent with a synthetic and complete presentation of Albanian activities and realizations. At the end of the salon a large portrait (portrait) of the King of Albania N.M.T. Bird I, will attract the attention of visitors. On the left and to the right of the Sovereign rite, two geographical maps of Albania and then on the other side, on the walls, artistic and geographical photomontages will illustrate Albania from the panoramic point of view – artistic, archaeological, folkloristic, economic, etc. On the wall shelves will be lined the products that feed the Albanian exports, such as wool, leather, olives, wood, eggs, tar, kerosene, cashews, tobacco, etc. Albanian industry in its east will be represented with interesting samples. The works of artisans, with silver and wood, will find a place near the typical and characteristic carpets near silks, etc. Now the synthesis of the fiery rhythm of activity that reigns in Albania today; Here is the meaning of the samples that will be organized in the Albanian pavilion. Regarding the interest with which the East Fair is held in the Albanian premises, we will add that for several days the Albanian press deals with the Pan-Albanian market of the eighth manifestation. The interest is polarized especially on the preparations for participation in “Albanian Day”. We are in the process of announcing that the organization of the collective walk of the authorities and traders on the occasion of the ‘Albania Day’, which this year is also being done by the K.T.A.M. and the East Fair in Albania, continues actively. The Ministry of National Economy has instructed all Chambers of Commerce to give due importance to the manifestation and benefit of the participation of exhibits of industrial and commercial classes of all provinces. Shk. T. Toçi, Minister of National Economy, confirming his participation in the “Day of Albania”, stated: “Albania, which in Barin heads the vanguard of a Nation of sincere and strong friends, has welcomed with confidence and enthusiasm the initiative bareze has been present every year, from the first day, with love that is well exchanged “. The best Ugars could not accompany this lively organizing phase of “Day of Albanian ”, which already has a charming tradition. The Albanians gathered for years in Bari are the hottest propagandists, the newspapers wholeheartedly support the organizer’s activity by dedicating articles and comments to the future manifestation that will reaffirm in the bright reality: Italy and Albania, brotherly next to each other. Bari and the East Fair will be happy to host on September 13 next for “Albanian Day”, Minister Toçi, Albanian personalities, producers and traders, the neighboring country, friend and ally, and Albanian friends will find the same fraternal reception, full of care, which has always been reserved for them and which serves to cement in excess of them, the traditional connection of millennial relations, cultures and trade between the two shores that “the Adriatic unites and does not divide”./Memorie.al