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The Polish Experience in the Visegrad Group after 2004


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The first is to provide a retrospective overview of the political and economic changes in Poland after its accession to the European Union in 2004. In the current context, the role of the Visegrad Group (V4) – as a sub-regional grouping within the EU – should be seen as essential. The first is to provide a retrospective overview of the political and economic changes in Poland following its accession to the European Union in 2004.

Retrospective Overview

Evolution of Polish Foreign Policy

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It cannot be denied that there has been a change in the attitude of Poles towards the EU. Poles see some clear benefits that EU membership has brought to their country, but the benefits have become less obvious on a personal level. However, it should be noted that the economic crisis has significantly changed the political landscape within the European Union, causing a shift in the European integration process.

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Toward V4 Minilateralism

In fact, the G20 can be considered the best example of this rule: it includes countries from six continents and accounts for 85 percent of the world's economy. There, too, the magic number is about 20: The world's top 20 polluters account for 75 percent of the planet's greenhouse gas emissions. Regarding HIV/AIDS, 19 countries are responsible for almost two-thirds of the world's AIDS-related deaths.”48.

In fact, if not coordinated sufficiently and properly, minilateral agreements could lead to an increasing exclusivity of formats, and ultimately to an uncontrolled version of a multi-speed Europe. Visegrad has a touch of the Commonwealth - a haphazard collection of countries held together by memories of shared history, some strong shared cultural ties in the elite and a love of cricket. Germany is the main focus of each of the V4's foreign and economic policies, and the European Union provides a vehicle for reformulating relations on a more equal and stable basis.50.

The scale of the V4's impact can also be represented by comparing the voting weights of the member states in the Council of the European Union. The Visegrad group can therefore be considered the best example of cooperation in a mini-lateral format with Polish participation. In 2013, in his annual speech to the Sejm, Sikorski stated: "A strong Poland in the EU also means a stronger Visegrad Group.

In the mid-1990s, the GDP of the four Visegrad Group countries was almost $270 billion.

EU Economic Integration

Agata Gostyńska and Nicolai von Ondarza emphasized that “since 2011, differentiated forms of cooperation have become regular instruments in the reform of the eurozone, with eurozone members signing a declaration on the Euro Plus Pact (signed by then 17 euro members plus six non- Member States). members of the Eurozone) and the conclusion of two international agreements – the European Stability Mechanism (ESM, only for Eurozone members) and the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union (the so-called Fiscal Compact, which was signed at the time by 17 eurozone members plus eight non-eurozone members). The first pillar is that Poland must counter all initiatives that lead to further fragmentation of the internal market. Consequently, all future projects concerning the integration of the eurozone must be organized within the institutional, legal and political framework of the EU.

And last but not least, the third pillar is that the EU's integrity must form the basis of any discussion on how to increase the democratic legitimacy of the integration project. On the one hand, any initiative aimed at reducing instability and fragmentation in the eurozone financial sector is in Poland's interest. Such activities "spread the benefits of the eurozone's common monetary policy through greater market integration and create macroprudential tools to prevent uncontrolled cross-border capital flows."57.

On the other hand, Poland should not unconditionally support the strengthening of the European surveillance system. It cannot therefore be ruled out that the new supervisory system may back their interests at the expense of the subsidiaries in Central Europe. Indeed, the banking union should provide a level playing field for both current and future members of the eurozone.

As Paweł Tokarski rightly emphasized, the draft should guarantee not only “participation in the decision-making process and access to information, but also the instruments for bank recapitalization.”58 A solid solution was offered in the Hübner report, which extended the EU suggested. tasks of the balance of payments mechanism for the recapitalization of banks outside the eurozone.

Energy Policy

One reason this is so challenging is the very extent of Russia's share of the world's natural gas reserves. The country possesses the largest natural gas reserves in the world: more than 27 percent of the global total. Gazprom, a company in which Russia holds a majority stake, is the main exporter and one of the largest conventional natural gas companies in the world.

Gazprom alone supplies one quarter of Europe's conventional natural gas and more than 70 percent of the conventional natural gas for the countries of the former Soviet Union. Shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe, especially from the United States, have already affected Russia's market share, and terminals to receive LNG have been built in the UK, Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Greece and Norway. In the EU, Poland has led the way as the country with one of the largest shale deposits and with the greatest commitment to making unconventional gas commercially viable.

As the pioneer in the European commercialization of shale gas, Poland is trying to learn and implement the most efficient practices used in the USA and Canada.66 However, as Andrew Michta rightly emphasized, “moving from [shale gas]. That balancing act must also take into account the additional costs of the infrastructure improvements needed to transport heavy equipment in and gas out of the country. Yet Polish shale gas, if produced in sufficient quantities under workable regulatory, tax and environmental regimes, could end Europe's dependence on Russia and in the process revolutionize how energy is produced, priced and delivered across Europe.

This would fundamentally change the nature of Europe's relationship with Russia, rearranging Europe's security equation as well as its energy markets.

Security Policy

The insufficient involvement of European countries in the discussion of the state of its security, including the challenges, threats and opportunities facing the European defense policy, should be interpreted as a syndrome of self-devaluation. Poland's attachment to the issue of security policy naturally stems from its historical experience, geographical location and its own limited potential. Poland believes that investing in the national defense potential - its modernization and development - is nothing more than sharing responsibility for the security of the transatlantic area and preparing to act outside it in the future, should the need arise.

Since August 2012, when President Bronisław Komorowski announced an initiative to modernize Polish defense, the air and missile defense system has been in the spotlight and has become a buzzword on both sides of the Atlantic. The scope of the modernization effort, however, is much more complex and consists of four different elements. This will make the Polish army one of the toughest in Central and Western Europe.

Thirdly, the most modern part of the Polish Armed Forces – the Air Force – will also be further strengthened by the introduction of a new advanced jet trainer system of eight aircraft by 2017. In addition, the helicopter fleet, operated by the various parts of the Armed Forces, will be fully modernized. In 2013, the Ministry of Economy, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of National Defense drew up an industry consolidation plan to help Poland.

It is therefore high time to revive l'esprit communautaire and adapt the EU to the "new normal" by starting the process of reviewing and amending the 2003 European Security Strategy.

Economic and Political Partnerships

Once Poland joined NATO and the EU, the goal was achieved, and the goals of the Weimar cooperation had to be redefined. In fact, the Weimar Triangle has the potential to become one of the most influential political groupings within the EU. It seems that, for example, security policy may become a specialty of the V4, the Weimar Triangle and the Baltic Rim in the future.

Jankowski is the Acting Chief of the International Analysis Division at the National Security Bureau of the Republic of Poland. This goal can be achieved mainly in the formats of the Visegrad Group (and Visegrad Plus), the Weimar Triangle (and the Weimar Triangle Plus) and the Baltic Rim. Bjurner, “European Security at the End of the Twentieth Century: The Subregional Contribution,” in Subregional Cooperation in the New Europe, ed.

9 Government information on Polish foreign policy in 2006 presented at the session of the Sejm on February 15, 2006 by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, Stefan Meller, p. 15 Government information on Polish foreign policy in 2007, presented at the session of the Sejm on 11 May 2007 by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, Anna Fotyga, p. 18 The Civic Platform and the Law and Justice parties have often been portrayed as parties with a rather different vision of Poland's approach to the EU.

31 Government information on Polish foreign policy in 2007 presented at the session of the Sejm on 11 May 2007 by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, Anna Fotyga, p. 34 Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Radosław Sikorski, in Poland's foreign policy goals for 2009, p. During the meeting, three topics were discussed: economic developments in the European Union, the future architecture of the Economic and Monetary Union and the strengthening of the Common Security and Defense Policy.

Table 3: The Foreign Trade Turnover of  Poland with other EU Member States in  2012 (in percent)
Table 3: The Foreign Trade Turnover of Poland with other EU Member States in 2012 (in percent)


Table 3: The Foreign Trade Turnover of  Poland with other EU Member States in  2012 (in percent)
Table 5: Foreign Policy Strategy for Poland until 2020



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