An urgent need for solidarity, i.e. Carpathian Europa suggests a EU reform

The debate about the future of the European Union and the ways of fixing it was the highlight of the second day of discussions and talks during the conference “Carpathian Europa” held within the framework of the 27th Economic Forum in Krynica. “A crisis of European values is very remarkable. We’re dealing with various crises within the Union,” stressed the host of the meeting, Speaker of the Sejm Marek Kuchciński.

He added that EU institutions are not ready to come to grips with these problems. The Speaker pointed out that sometimes it is necessary to take a firm stand towards various controversial suggestions of the European Union, just as it is the case with the Visegrad Group, Hungary or Poland. “A mutli-speed Europe is a bad solution. We need solidarity and must convince the West that the core values for us are independence and sovereignty,” said Marek Kuchciński.

The discussion devoted to fixing the European Union focused, among others, on the role of our region in the discussion about the EU reform, recipes for the crises within the EU, security in Europe and EU’s unity. According to the moderator of the debate, MEP Professor Zdzisław Krasnodębski, the European Union is facing such problems that require new ideas and concepts, above all from the side of Central and Eastern Europe.

“All the member states should be treated equally,” argued Richárd Hörcsik, Chairman of the EU Commission in the Hungarian Parliament. The politician stressed that fixing the EU structures requires, among other things, respecting Christian values and there mustn’t be any double standards. “We must remind the EU leaders that we have the same rights and that we are a unity,” he said.

The Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Andriy Volodymyrovych Parubiy, talked about the fundamental importance of the European direction adopted by our Ukrainian neighbor, “For Ukraine the choice of the European Union is a civilizational choice,” he explained. According to Chairman Parubiy the key challenge that the EU is facing is security, especially in the face of the Russian aggression in Ukraine. “We must develop a new security concept for the whole Europe,” he concluded.

Vladimir Marinkovic, Deputy Chairman of the Serbian Parliament stressed in the discussion that only the EU and European integration can guarantee a future for Belgrade. “We must be a part of the European Union, mainly due to security and economic issues,” he said.

On the second day of the conference representatives of national parliaments and governmental administration, scientists, experts, analysts and self-government officials from Central and Eastern European countries debated also about, among other things, the policy for the development of Europe’s regions and benefits and costs related to Euro. Other subjects discussed included: the European Neighbourhood Policy and the immigration crisis, security in Europe on the Eastern-European borders of EU and NATO as well as various geological aspects of the Carpathian region, including geothermal energy.

During the discussion panels the following speakers held the floor: Vice Minister of Development – Jerzy Kwieciński, Chairman of the Parliamentary Commission for EU – Izabela Kloc, MP Grzegorz Długi, Vice Minister of the Interior and Administration – Jakub Skiba, Vice Minister of Defense – Tomasz Szatkowski, Vice Chairman of the Serbian Parliament – Gordana Čomić, Chairman of the Commission for European Integration in the Georgian Parliament – Tamar Khulordava. The panelists included also the government’s plenipotentiary for raw ingredient policy – Mariusz Orion Jędrysek, Vice Speaker of the Senate – Bogdan Borusewicz, auditor at the European Court of Auditors – Janusz Wojciechowski and an MP of the Slovak National Council – Martin Fedor.