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Basel trade fair opens its doors

Christoph Blocher (centre) cuts the ribbon to open the annual Muba trade fair in Basel Keystone

The justice minister, Christoph Blocher, has officially opened the Basel Muba, Switzerland’s biggest trade fair.

Over 1,000 exhibitors are taking part in the ten-day event, which concentrates on lifestyle, health and leisure.

This year, Denmark is the guest country and was represented by the prince consort, Prince Henrik, at the opening ceremony.

In his opening address, Blocher said the competitive spirit displayed by exhibitors needed to be mirrored by the world of politics.

In a reference to The Emperor’s New Clothes, a fairy tale by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen, he criticised politicians for expressing fine ideas which were never put into practice.

The Basel spring fair, which runs until February 27, is housed in three halls and covers an area of 35,000 square metres. In addition to shopping for the home and garden, visitors can attend special presentations on health and fitness.

Highlights at this year’s event are the Sport Days, featuring numerous live sporting events, a Women’s Day and the election of Miss North West Switzerland.

On Saturday, around 500 runners are expected to take part in the annual race to the top of the 86-storey Ramada Tower at the Basel exhibition centre. They will be trying to beat the record time of 2.56 minutes set by last year’s winner Gabriel Lombriser.

Guest country Denmark has its own 2,000-square metre pavilion where exhibitors are displaying furniture, furnishings, high-tech electronic goods and crafts for sale.

To mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Hans Christian Andersen, the Danish pavilion will be presenting a puppet show based on the writer’s tale Snow Queen.

swissinfo with agencies

Over 1,000 exhibitors are taking part in the Muba.
Three exhibition halls are being used for the event.
The fair showcases products and services arranged according to the themes of lifestyle, health, sport, garden, multimedia and fashion.
Guest country Denmark is exhibiting products including furniture, furnishings and high-tech electronics.

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