Central European countries’ influence on EU policies

The paper analyses a capacity of the Central European member states of the EU to become active players in the current developments allegedly leading to a new shape of the European integration and EU’s foreign policy. The neoliberal approach of the socio-economic transformation after 1989 made the countries of the Visegrad Group (V4) potential allies of the United Kingdom within the EU. However, their close political and economic ties to Germany hinder the possibility that the V4-UK cooperation would counterbalance policies pushed through by Berlin.
From the point of view of the V4 countries a vital internal balance of the EU will be lost if Britain leaves the organization. In a longer perspective this would make the countries of our region to accept the continental model of development with its ideas of deepening the common economic governance and more centralised social and economic regulation. 
Similarly, a major result of the lost balance in the sphere of the common foreign policy would be domination by German interests and visions. It is exceptionally dangerous for the countries of our region when it comes to the EU-Russia relations. 
The capacity of the Central European countries to influence the outcomes of the present European turmoil is being decreased by a lack of common position on internal EU developments as well as external policy issues. Despite the attempts to coordinate Central European countries policies the differences even in their reactions to the Ukrainian crisis were more than evident.
Therefore despite a political potential and growing economic strength the Central European region perspectives for a bigger influence on EU policies are uncertain at best. This will contribute to prolonging the period of turbulence in the EU.


Newsletter, latest research and events


New Direction - The Foundation for European Reform
Rue du Trône, 4, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
+32 2 280 63 58

Copyright © 2016 New Direction – The Foundation for European Reform