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Friday, 6 June 2008

There are no difficult problems between Poland and Slovakia

On 6 June 2008, President of the Slovak Republic Mr Ivan Gašparovič and Mrs Gašparovič came with an official visit to Poland. Following the official welcoming ceremony, the two Presidents proceeded with talks in private and subsequently, they co-chaired plenary talks between the two delegations. The talks centred on ways and means to strengthen bilateral cooperation, in the first place focusing on transportation infrastructure, the issue which will be the subject of a joint initiative by the Presidents of Poland and Slovakia, and on transborder cooperation where particular attention was paid to the Tatra Euroregion. Moreover, the Presidents also discussed energy security and cooperation in the region, and especially within the Visegrad Group. Also current situation in the Balkans was raised in the discussion, and the situation in Ukraine and Georgia. Moreover, selected items of EU agenda were discussed and the most important problems of international security.

The Presidents of Poland and of Slovakia met also with the media. At the press conference, President Lech Kaczyński made among others the following points:

”We have just completed the first stage of our talks with President Gašparovič, a point that I wish to emphasise, since we are also going to continue our talks over the dinner tonight and but we will also have plenty of time tomorrow and the day after tomorrow in Jurata. We will able to cover many issues that have not yet been covered. In the course of our two-hour’ discussion in private we were speaking a lot about difficult problems. These are not the problems that would be related to our relations for there are no difficult problems between Poland and Slovakia. The only exception is an insufficient state of our infrastructure, broadly understood transportation infrastructure. On that score, we shall be in a position to come up with an initiative together with President Gašparovič. But we did speak about difficult problems in the region, about the relation within the Visegrad Group, about Kosovo problems, about the situation in Ukraine and about the road of our Ukrainian friends to NATO and to the European Union. We also spoke about the issues related to the political change in Russia, a partner country, these are matters that always have a vast significance since Russia itself has an important significance. Moreover, we were speaking in the form of projections about what will happen after the US elections. This was a very interesting discussion indeed, a very interesting exchange of views , very interesting sharing of knowledge on various issues. I am very satisfied with it. We both came to the following conclusion: if we were to propose that Polish-Slovak cooperation :be it in the EU or in the UN or in NATO is a kind of capital, then this capital is only used nowadays in 50 percent at best. I even fear than in less than 50 percent. This state of affairs should be remedied step by step ,and the role of the Presidents in this regard is very important. This is in the interest of our two nations but also in the interest of a democratisation of the European Union which represents a powerful club of states at present but a club where there are some hierarchies. This is my summary of our discussion and let me reiterate my point that this is not yet one half of the time that we are going to spend together and there is a lot of in store for us.”

On the same day in the evening hours, the President of RP and Mrs Kaczyńska hosted an official dinner in the Presidential Palace in honour of the President of Slovakia and Mrs Gašparovič, also attended by members of both delegations and invited guests.

The talks of the Presidents of Poland and Slovakia were continued on 7 and 8 June when the Presidential Couples were staying on the Hel Peninsula.
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