Balázs Molnár, Deputy State Secretary for European Affairs participated at the Warsaw Global Forum on 6th July 2017, where he spoke about the Visegrad Four (V4) cooperation and its connections to the Three Seas Initiative (Trimarium), the Hungarian Presidency of the V4, as well as the future of the EU and the concept of a multi-speed Europe.

In the V4 panel discussion Mr Molnár said that the Adriatic-Baltic-Black Sea cooperation provided opportunities to reach national and common goals alike, as well as to strengthen European and Transatlantic relations. He emphasised that the Visegrad Four was traditionally committed to support the Western Balkans and that the Three See Initiative may contribute to the stability of the region.

Regarding European integration Mr Balázs Molnár pointed out that the success of the Eurozone was a common interest and that the region generally supported the deepening of the Economic and Monetary Union at the same time insisting that it may not entail any withdrawal of competences for Member States outside the Eurozone. ‘In the spirit of the V4 joint declaration we can accept the increased application of enhanced cooperation, under the conditions defined by the Treaties, avoiding the emergence of a two-speed Europe’ – he highlighted.

The Deputy State Secretary told that on the 1th of July 2017, Hungary had taken over the rotating Presidency of the V4 group from Poland with the motto: ‘V4 connects’. He added that the programme of the Hungarian V4 Presidency would focus on four themes: European Visegrad, Regional Visegrad, Digital Visegrad and Global Visegrad. Mr Molnár underlined: ‘Our main message is that the V4 is a group of Member States within the EU that takes an active and responsible part in our common decision-making process and therefore represent an important added value for European integration’.

The Three Seas Initiative was originally conceived by Polish Marshall Józef Piłsudski’s after the First World War. At the recent high-level meeting of the Trimarium, held in Warsaw on 6-7 July, Hungary was represented by President János Áder; the list of attendees also included the representatives of 11 other Member States: Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania and Slovenia. With regard to Donald Trump’s visit to Poland on the 6th of July, the Office of the President of Poland decided to relocate the summit and its side-event, the Global Forum, to the Polish capital instead of its original venue in Wrocław. Participating the Three Seas Initiative President Trump gave a speech of the 6th of July in which he called for strengthening the collective defence system of NATO and emphasized the importance of cooperation between America and Central Eastern Europe. Representatives of the V4 countries held a panel discussion at the Global Forum entitled ‘The Visegrad Group in the European Union: V4 Ideas for a Better Europe’ with the participation of Hungarian deputy state secretary Balázs Molnár, as well as state secretaries for European affairs Ivan Korčok of Slovakia, Konrad Szymański of Poland and Aleš Chmelař of the Czech Republic.

(Prime Minister’s Office)