The Conference “Europe of the Carpathians” – the 2nd day of discussions

“Europe of the Carpathians” conference has ended. On the initiative of the Speaker of the Polish Sejm Marek Kuchciński participants over two for two days took part in eight thematic panels. They discussed the most important issues pertaining to Central and Eastern Europe’s history, culture, social affairs, economy and current European problems. More than forty speakers (parliamentarians, politicians, local government officials and intellectuals) from numerous countries, including Poland, exchanged opinions and experiences on the current issues of the region. The Forum brought together the guests from Albania, Armenia, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Latvia, Moldova, Germany, Poland, Russia, Romania, Sweden, Ukraine, the United States, Hungary, Great Britain, Italy.

The aim of “the Europe of the Carpathians” Forum – as in previous years – was to inspire to work towards a balanced development of Central and Eastern Europe. The Carpathian macro-region brings together the territories of different countries and regions characterized by common features and problems.

On the occasion of the conference the Publishing House of Sejm prepared a special publication “Europe of the Carpathians” both in Polish and English.

In the discussion panels the following issues were raised: the parliamentarian cooperation in the Visegrad Group, the concept of ABC (ISTHMUS) and the geopolitics in the region.

The Speaker of the Sejm Marek Kuchciński was honored by Marshal of the Podkarpackie Province Wladyslaw Ortyl.  The shield of Podkarpacie Region was given to the Marshal for his active involvement of the province development.

The 4 following thematic panels were held on September 8th.

Achievements and Deficiencies of Democracy: 25 Years of Experience of Central-Eastern Europe.

The participants with a minute of silence commemorated Ryszard Siwiec who 48 years ago, in the protest against the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops into Czechoslovakia, did self-immolate.

The discussion focused on the problems of fragility of democracy in Central and Eastern Europe, popularity of anti-system movements, renaissance of patriotism and the fear of immigrants in the region.

The Carpathian Strategy – A Development Concept for the Central-Eastern European Macroregion

During this session the strategy of the Carpathians as a priority in Polish foreign policy and the key issue of the Polish presidency in the Visegrad Group were discussed.

The panelists spoke about the uniqueness of the Carpathians region for the European Union and Central and Eastern Europe stressing the need for improving the socio-economic conditions of the region.

Carpathian Region: Challenges and Opportunities for Tourism

The discussion in the third panel referred to the tourism potential of the Carpathians, the use of its potential and the ways of increasing the attractiveness of the brand in the region.

Sustainable Development of the Carpathian Region: Transport, Culture, Environment, Resources

Participants of the last session discussed the foundations of Europe’s sustainable development of the Carpathians and the threats the region faces. Over the discussions the infrastructure development of the region together with “Via Carpathia” was mentioned.

The Panelists stressed the wealth of natural resources of the Carpathians underlined the need for promoting the region.

Sejm Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej

[photo: Paweł Kula, sejm.gov.pl]