Bratislava, January 27 (TASR) – The Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE) has come at a crucial time, but most EU citizens don’t know that it’s taking place and that they can express themselves, and although the CoFoE has garnered a lot of valuable input, the potential of the conference may not have been used fully, said Katarina Csefalvayova, a former MP and incumbent director of a think tank called the Institute for Central Europe.
“Right now, as confidence in politicians is falling to record lows in many EU countries, at a time of a hybrid war, an unprecedented global pandemic and a period characterised more than anything else by the word ‘uncertainty’, it’s an important signal from Brussels that it’s addressing every citizen of the [European] Union with an interest in hearing their opinions,” Csefalvayova told TASR.
The former MP pointed out that a number of Slovak citizens, as well as others, especially from the newer EU states, feel that they are on the periphery. “They feel like second-class citizens; they are disappointed that after almost 18 years of membership of an elite club that was supposed to guarantee the prosperity of their members and their people, they’ve failed to reach the standard of living of which they dreamed. This disappointment is being used successfully many times by various extremist, nationalist, anti-system and anti-European forces,” added Csefalvayova.