The Körber Network Foreign Policy visited Warsaw on 20 and 21 May at the invitation of the Polish Embassy in Berlin against the backdrop of the forthcoming Polish EU Presidency in the second half of 2011. The conversations between members of the Network and Polish politicians and experts focused on what Poland hopes to achieve during the EU Presidency, and on the current issues and challenges confronting Polish foreign, security and European policy.
On the first day Andrzej Halicki, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the Sejm, the Polish Parliament, talked to members of the Körber Network Foreign Policy about Poland’s foreign policy priorities during the EU Presidency. The discussion focused in particular on the Eastern Partnership.
The ensuing conversation with Dr. Zdzisław Lachowski, Deputy Head of the National Security Bureau, was devoted to topical questions relating to European security and defence policy. Subsequently the participants talked to Piotr Woźniak, former Polish Minister of Economy and chairman of the Administrative Board of ACER, the EU Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators, about energy security in Europe.
In the afternoon Grażyna Bernatowicz, Under-Secretary of State with responsibility for policy within the European Union, Joanna Skoczek, Head of the Department of Coordination of Poland’s Presidency of EU Council, and Małgorzata Kałużyńska, Head of the Department of Economic Policy, explained the opportunities and challenges of the Polish EU Presidency. A discussion with Wawrzyniec Smoczyński, Deputy Foreign Editor of the prestigious Polish news magazine “Polityka,” brought the first day of the visit to a conclusion.
The second day began with a conversation about the future of Poland and the European Union in the wake of the financial crisis with Professor Danuta Hübner, who is an MEP and chairwoman of the Committee on Regional Development. The participants then went on to discuss this topic with Paweł Świeboda, President of demosEUROPA – Centre for European Strategy. The programme came to an end with a guided tour around the Old Town in Warsaw.