Vienna, 24 November 2003 - The Polish Foreign Minister Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz today presented the Austro-Polish Prize for Journalism 2003 to Josef Kirchengast (foreign desk of the daily Austrian broadsheet "Der Standard"). Special commendation prizes also went to Markus Greussing of the cultural service of the Austrian national broadcasting company ORF and Martyna Czarnowska of the daily newspaper "Wiener Zeitung".
The Austro-Polish Prize for Journalists was initiated on 17 July 2001 by the then Polish Foreign Minister Wladyslaw Bartoszewski and Austrian Minister for Foreign Affairs Benita Ferrero-Waldner. The Prize, which is a token of the good bilateral relations between the two countries, aims to act as an incentive to journalists to intensify their reporting on Poland and Austria respectively in the context of the forthcoming EU Enlargement, thus helping to provide the public with a well-informed and balanced picture of the respective other country.
In accordance with the statutes adopted in 2001, the Austro-Polish Prize for Journalism is awarded once a year, alternating between a Polish and an Austrian journalist, in honour of journalistic work that contributes towards enhancing mutual understanding of political, economic and cultural life in Poland and Austria.
The first prize-winner in 2001 was Burkhard Bischof of the Austrian daily newspaper "Die Presse", with the 2002 prize being awarded to Barbara Radzikowska-Krysczak, the Vienna correspondent of Polish Radio.
The sponsors of the - 4,000 main prize are Bank Austria Creditanstalt (BA-CA) and its Polish subsidiary, Bank Przemyslowo-Handlowy PBK (BPH-PBK).
The special commendation prizes were endowed by the Polish Confederation of Private Employers (PKPP) and the editors of the Polish weekly "Polityka".