The debate on the future of Europe in the framework of the “Europe of the Carpathians” conference in Krynica

The initiative “Europe of the Carpathians” came into being in 1999-2000, and since 2011 its participants have regularly met at the Economic Forum in Krynica Zdrój. The 26th Economic Forum will house the 13th international conference of this cycle. This initiative’s main initiator and patron is Marshal of the Sejm Marek Kuchciński, while its participants are politicians, scientists, experts, analysts and local government officials representing Carpathian states. The project is organised by the Chancellery of the Sejm of the Republic of Poland.

This year, apart from discussions on current international issues and state of cooperation in the Carpathian region, the participants will hold a debate on the future of Europe. “Europe of the Carpathians” is indeed a centre of Central and Eastern Europe, and at the same time it constitutes one of regional cooperation platforms. The strength of this project lies in its foundation on specific interests, transit routes, social needs, environmental coherence and ability to cooperate. Nowadays, the Carpathian Mountains do not demarcate the border and do not divide Central and Eastern Europe, but are rather a community building factor.

The following several thematic sessions are planned for the 13th conference: Visegrad Group – contemporary challenges, new forms of cooperation; Carpathians and neighbours – from common values to shared interests; Intellectual facets of Central and Eastern Europe; Successes and shortcomings of democracy: 25 years of experience of Central and Eastern Europe; The Carpathian strategy – a development concept for the Central and Eastern European macro-region; The sustainable development of Europe of the Carpathians: culture, environment, resources. The following persons were invited to take the floor during the conference: Speakers of Parliaments and parliamentarians from Central and Eastern European states and from the European Parliament, representatives of states from the Carpathian region, representatives of local governments, universities and non-governmental organisations.

Over this year’s conference “Europe of the Carpathians” ten discussion panels and the Plenary Session – What Europe Needs Solidarity? are going to be held. The Session is to be with the participation of the Speakers of the  Parliaments of the Carpathian region countries. The participation has been confirmed by i.a.: the President of the Parliament of Lithuania Loreta Graužinienė and the Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies of Romania Florin Iordache. The Marshal of the Sejm Marek Kuchciński will be the host of the whole meeting.