The Visegrad Co-operation, Poland, Slovakia and Austria in the Czech Foreign Policy: Coping with Irritants?

Vít Dostál
Content Type
Institute of International Relations Prague
Since the developments in Central Europe were very dynamic in 2017, the importance of the Visegrad co-operation, Poland, Austria and Slovakia in the Czech foreign policy has grown. The general elections in Austria, the judicial reform in Poland and the subsequent triggering of Article 7 of the Treaty of the EU against Poland, the Polish and Hungarian EU Presidencies and various EU dossiers, such as the dossier on the reform of the EU’s asylum system, would all suggest that the Czech Republic should have paid more attention to the region. However, the Czech Republic chose rather a free-riding and adaptational approach toward it, and in some cases, it has shown disinterest in its policy vis-à-vis the region. There were fewer political contacts with and initiatives related to the other V4 states than in the previous years, and the Czech foreign policy was not able to address major dilemmas of the Central European policy. Interestingly, at the same time, the importance of the region was reflected in a higher politicisation and polarisation of the issues related to the Visegrad Group, Poland and Hungary.
Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Reform, European Union, Asylum
Political Geography
Poland, Hungary, Austria, Czech Republic, Central Europe, Slovakia