Visegrad Youth Declaration

hlavicka2jjjDeclaration of Visegrad students who represented the Czech Republic, Hungary, the Republic of Poland and the Slovak Republic on cooperation on the Visegrad Group at the Visegrad Youth Forum 2013 in Banská Bystrica

The Youth of Visegrad has met in Banská Bystrica with the intent of elaborating a new declaration of the Visegrad Group. We feel that the previous declaration signed in 2004 is outdated and therefore there is a need to create a new one, which would reflect the current issues and challenges.

Bearing in mind that the integration of V4 countries into Euro-Atlantic structures was successful and is now complete, we have agreed that it is time to focus on other areas. Despite that, we remain strongly convinced that cooperation within the European Union and NATO is key for future development of V4 countries and that we should contribute to further development of this collaboration. That can be achieved by presenting joint interests of Visegrad group on the ground of European Union.

The accession to the European Union and NATO was a result of successful transition and it is our duty to share the experience with other countries that also have the ambition to join these organizations and help them with integration. Due to geographic proximity, we should focus especially on Western Balkans. However, we cannot omit states in a wider region, such as Eastern Partnership countries. We should also consider the possibility of further expansion of the V4 cooperation to Baltic states.

Despite focusing on Euro-Atlantic structures, we should not forget on internal issues. We have to deepen the cooperation in order to improve the situation in important areas, including the infrastructure and transportation inside the V4 region. We should also focus on improving the awareness about opportunities which Visegrad Group creates and achieve better promotion of its activities.

The Youth of Visegrad is very happy to declare that the cooperation between young people from V4 countries is strong and beneficial. We regard this declaration as a opportunity to point out the most important issues and we hope that it will be useful in achieving of Visegrad group goals.

Guidelines on the Future areas of Visegrad co-operation

Keeping in mind the common interest of all participating countries presented in the declaration in Banská Bystrica on 27th of April 2013, future cooperation will develop particularly in following areas:

 Co-operation within the V4 area:

  • Cultural development is our common goal, it should be strengthened via different events, we suggest the possibility of creating a V4 music festival,
  • Education, youth exchange, science – we recommend granting scholarships to more students in order to raise the number of opportunities to study in other V4 countries,
  • Improve the cooperation with IVF in a field of education and improve awareness about projects and opportunities to study,
  • Continuation of the civic dimension of the Visegrad co-operation within the International Visegrad Fund and its structures,
  • Infrastructure building, especially improvement of transportation between V4 countries,
  • Cross-border cooperation,
  • Environment,
  • Coordination of V4 interests in NATO and EU in order to create a stronger position to pursue our joint interests,
  • Fight against terrorism, organized crime, and illegal migration, sharing of innovative methods, police training,
  • Defence and arms industries,
  • Common Air Space and V4 Battle Groups, with improved effectiveness
  • Schengen cooperation,
  • Disaster management,
  • Exchange of views on possible, cooperation in the field of labour and social policy,
  • Exchange of experience on foreign development assistance policy,
  • Better promotion of V4.

Co-operation within the EU

  • Consultations and cooperation on current issues of common interest,
  • We suggest establishing apermanent body to discuss common topics and create a long-term strategy.
  • The role of this body would be:

o   dealing with the complicated bureaucracy,

o   presenting ways of solving current issues- for example economic crisis,

o   coordinating common V4 policy,

  • We have capabilities to help EU with active policy towards the Western Balkans,

o  We consider Western Balkan to be very important for whole V4 region and its security,

o  One of our aims is to project investment in the area of Western Balkans,

o  We recommend the an adjustment of visa requirements and establishment of a body, which would collect information about our previous experience valuable for Western Balkan, it would also provide economic aid, practical advice and help to solve poor human rights situation,

  • Cooperating at projects that are expansive with the aim to make it available for other countries which are not able to afford it;
  • Cooperation in defence policy and energy policy- in cooperation we can make it cheaper,
  • Czech Republic and Hungary should be encouraged to join Eurozone – it would provide necessity to fulfil economic conditions such as decreasing of the public debt.
  • Sharing of training grounds to enable exercise
  • Show the public the role of cooperation – pooling and sharing

Co- operation within NATO and other international organizations

  • Consultations and cooperation in the framework of NATO and on its defence capabilities,
  • Maintaining its transatlantic link,
  • Commitment to strengthening of transatlantic solidarity and cohesion,
  • Co-ooperation on the basis of the V4 experience to promote a common understanding of security among the countries aspiring to European and Euro-Atlantic institutions,
  • Enhanced co-operation and exchange of information in international organizations (UN, Council of Europe, OECD, etc.) consideration of possible joint initiatives,
  • Mutual support of candidates in international organizations and bodies,
  • Creating of the headquarters and Visegrad diplomatic offices,
  • V4 battle group could be the contribution to the cooperation within the NATO,
  • Contribution to the North – Atlantic integration,
  • Creating a common representation,
  • New basic structure for Visegrad cooperation,
  • Cooperation within wider region – focus on Western Balkans, Eastern Partnership,
  • Mutual help in effort to improve relations with other countries.

Students from Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia, present at the Visegrad Youth Forum 2013

Visegrad Youth Declaration 2013 (.pdf)