Wien, 13. July 2012 Press release

Waldner: “The time has come to design the EU of the 21st century”

State Secretary Waldner opens the Forum Europe in Neumarkt in Styria with a keynote speech

Vienna, 13 July 2012 – “Europe – Quo vadis?” State Secretary Wolfgang Waldner will be asking tomorrow, 14 July 2012, at the event celebrating “55 years Europahaus Neumarkt”.

“We live in a period of change and transition. The economic crisis of the past few years and the geo-political changes require the EU to adjust to these new developments to prevail in global competition. I view the crisis as an opportunity for Europe to implement the necessary reforms quickly and thus create the basis to regain confidence for its role in the world”, Waldner said before the event.

The Forum celebrates the 55th anniversary of Europahaus Neumarkt that has been a place of encounters and powerhouse of ideas for designing a unified Europe since 1957. “My thanks go out to the managers and operators of Europahaus for their commitment and incessant efforts to provide information about Europe and promote the discussion on Europe”, the State Secretary said.

The European project is going through a phase of upheaval. With its crisis management, the EU has already clearly shown that it works. The ESM and fiscal pact are important steps, Waldner said, enabling Europe to persist in international competition. Strengthening the common economic and currency policies will be decisive to position the EU as a global player. Saving measures and consolidation must go hand in hand with long-term impetus for growth. In addition, closer monitoring of banks should be possible in future and the democratic structures for the citizens of Europe to partake in EU decisions should be put firmly in place according to Waldner.

Waldner also said that the paper of the 10 foreign ministers, which bears the hallmark of Austrian Foreign Minister Spindelegger and hence of Austria, is an important initiative. Further essential proposals were made in the paper submitted by the four presidents (Rompuy, Barroso, Draghi and Juncker).

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