Vienna, 26 October 2012 – "By contrast with opponents of the EU who fan fears and worries, I want to do everything I can to increase our citizens' trust in the EU", State Secretary Lopatka said at the Dialogue about Europe event in the Ministry of European and International Affairs. On the occasion of the Open House Day to mark the Austrian National Holiday, the State Secretary invited interested citizens to engage in a dialogue about Europe with him.
"I give top priority to a "Europe of the citizens": We have to provide our citizens with better information about the EU and instil in them the feeling of being part of Europe. I am happy to act as a contact point and to respond to Europe-related questions. I am going to travel through Austria in the next few months to discuss Europe with our people, to listen to their fears and worries, but above all to inform them about the many positive achievements of the EU", the State Secretary said.
"However, a "Europe of the citizens" also requires that the European Parliament and the national parliaments are more strongly involved in the decision-finding processes to increase democratic legitimisation and give more say to the people", Lopatka said.
"Europe has reached a decisive point. In addition to managing the effects of the financial crisis it is now important that we make Europe fit for the future! Cooperation in economic and currency policy will have to be increased on EU level; we need structural reforms and budgetary discipline. After all, only a Europe with a stable economy will be able to compete with the USA, China and with emerging economic powers. Targeted, future-oriented measures will increase our people's trust in the EU", Lopatka concluded.
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