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Subregional co-operation in East-Central Europe : the Visegrad Group and the Central European Free Trade Agreement

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  • Political Science
  • Politikwissenschaft
  • International Relations
  • International Politics
  • Foreign Affairs
  • Development Policy
  • European Politics
  • Internationale Beziehungen
  • Entwicklungspolitik
  • Europapolitik
  • Europäische Integration
  • Freihandelszone
  • Internationale Zusammenarbeit
  • Osteuropa
  • Polen
  • Ungarn
  • Eu
  • Slowakei
  • Tschechische Republik
  • Cefta
  • Eu-Beitritt
  • Postsozialistisches Land
  • Osterweiterung
  • Ostmitteleuropa
  • Eu-Erweiterung
  • European Integration
  • Free Trade Area
  • International Cooperation
  • Eastern Europe
  • Poland
  • Hungary
  • Slovakia
  • Czech Republic
  • Joining The European Union
  • Post-Socialist Country
  • Eastwards Expansion
  • East Central Europe
  • Eu Expansion
  • Descriptive Study
  • Deskriptive Studie
  • Political Science


'The paper analysis the evolution, current state and prospects of the Visegrad group, one of the more successful sub-regional co-operation frameworks of East-central Europe. The absence of formalized institutional structures made the arrangement flexible and thus adaptable to changes. At the same time it has been prone to spoilers that could have been avoided in case more established institutional structure had been established. Whereas in the early 1990s its prime objective was to eliminate the remnants of the past, contribute to the termination of the Warsaw Treaty and the withdrawal of the Soviet troops from the region and co-ordinate the countries' 'return to Europe', nowadays it strives to foster EU integration, help the post-Meciar democratic consolidation and development of Slovakia and carry out pragmatic co-operation in different areas. It is open to question whether the group could have a new life after the participating countries' upcoming EU accession. The author is of the view that whereas the Central European Free Trade Agreement will have to wind up when EU enlargement occurs, there is hope to continue the Visegrad group with a residual political agenda beyond it.' (author's abstract)

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