Josef hírek

2011.10.08. 18:27

V4 Summit - Presidents review cooperation in Visegrad

Budapest, October 8 (MTI) - Presidents of the Visegrad Four cooperation group of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia met on Saturday, concluding a two-day summit in Visegrad, just north of Budapest, where the alliance was established twenty years earlier.

Budapest, October 8 (MTI) - Presidents of the Visegrad Four cooperation group of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia met on Saturday, concluding a two-day summit in Visegrad, just north of Budapest, where the alliance was established twenty years earlier.

President Pal Schmitt of Hungary said the V4 countries had been less affected by the economic crisis than big western European states, because these countries were used to belt tightening. Nearly all western European states must make serious efforts to beat the crisis, not only Greece, Schmitt said.

 

He added that although the four countries differed in terms of economic situations and strength, they were "four friendly countries, with equal standing and equal rights", concentrating on forging firmer ties.

 

The four presidents said the alliance had achieved its original goal, the Euro-Atlantic integration of its members, but the efficient form of cooperation had remained in place afterwards, too.

 

Czech President Vaclav Klaus said the Visegrad Four alliance had "strengthened friendship" between the countries.

 

Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski said the V4 had to stay efficient in the future, too, so the alliance could represent their joint interests in the European Union.

 

Slovak President Ivan Gasparovic said what had to be stressed in the V4 is not what makes its members different but what ties them together.

 

The four presidents agreed that there was still no alternative to nuclear energy for the region, and they would continue using it. Czech President Vaclav Klaus said not doing so would be "absurd" because of a lack of natural gas, crude oil or other energy resources in the region.

 

The V4 presidents discussed regional projects and agreed that the V4 should play an active role in the Danube Strategy and the Baltic Sea Strategy, while their energy networks and the north-south transport corridors should be developed. The V4 s role in the civil sphere was also discussed, and presidents praised the work of the Visegrad Fund, established ten years ago, which provides students and educators with scholarships and supports culture projects.

 

In the break of the meeting, the presidents viewed an exhibition of MTI photographs about earlier V4 meetings, and later they watched a tournament of knights in the Visegrad castle s tiltyard.

 

On Friday, the presidents gave speeches at a conference on Central Europe s economic potential and possibilities at a conference at Budapest s Corvinus University.

 

The Visegrad alliance was formed by Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Poland on February 15, 1991 with the aim of supporting the countries European integration. The alliance added a fourth member with the establishment of Slovakia in 1993.

 

The royal palace in Visegrad was also the venue for the signing of a political and trade pact between Hungarian, Czech and Polish rulers in 1335.

 

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