The status of Central European countries and V4 countries within the EU

On 10th April 2018, the European Liberal Forum, in cooperation with the Institute for Politics and Society and the Prague House, held a discussion on the topic The status of Central European countries and V4 countries within the EU. The invitation was accepted by Martina Dlabajova, Vice-President of the European Liberal Forum and Member of the European Parliament, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, Vice-Chairman of the Free Democrats Group in the German Bundestag, Aleš Chmelař, State Secretary for European Affairs and Angelika Mlinar, Member of the European Parliament. Jan Macháček, Chairman of the Management Board of the Institute for Politics and Society, took the moderation. The debate was begun by Angelika Mlinar, who said Austria could act as a bridge between the new and old EU Member States. She also recalled the recently victory of Viktor Orbán in the Hungarian parliamentary elections and expressed her conviction that the V4 countries, especially Hungary, did not present an integrated concept within the EU. In conclusion, Mrs. Mlinar stressed the need for intensive communication and open debate among EU Member States to solve all the problems. Martina Dlabajova stressed the need to seek a common consensus between EU countries wishing to accelerate European integration and those who worry about it. She mentioned that the Visegrad Group played an important role during the process of admission of these countries to the EU, thanks in particular to their cooperation and mutual support. However, at present, V4 countries have different dynamics of relations within the EU. Slovakia is a member of the eurozone and wants to be part of the EU core. On the other hand, Poland and Hungary are less interested in European integration. The Czech Republic, according to Mrs. Dlabajova, is still looking for her position in the process of European integration.

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