The World’s Conservatives Gather in Budapest
23 September 2021
Whether the Conference on the Future of Europe will be another boring bureaucratic exercise or create an opportunity for treaty change, some countries are already pondering their strategies towards this deliberative exercise.
The new conference format of talks on the bloc’s future initiated officially last weekend prompts new risks to the unity of the European Union. Brussels’ eternal policy optimism underpins the deliberative exercise.
Yet, some governments like Hungary, Poland or Slovenia are considering using reverse sentiments to sponsor their agenda and contribute to the electoral mobilisation.
If they succeed they will only legitimise the political narrative of an East-West divide, thereby further undermining the whole European project, unless a response by civil society can go far beyond the format set by the Conference organisers.