In their ongoing quest to shape majorities on EU policies, Germany and France both have an interest in anchoring the Czech and Slovak governments in their respective camps.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel travels to Bratislava this week to meet with the Visegrad Group. This is the first high-level meeting between Merkel and her V4 counterparts since 2016.

It happens against the backdrop of widening gaps on the overall direction of the European Union, on the development of democracy and the rule of law in Hungary and Poland, and the controversy between Berlin and Central and Eastern European capitals over the EU’s migration and asylum policies.

No doubt, the exchange between Chancellor Merkel and the V4 in Bratislava – Slovakia holds the Presidency of the V4 in 2018/2019 – is highly important. From a Berlin perspective, despite manifest differences on EU policy, there is a strong interest in keeping the V4 countries engaged.

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Almut Moeller & Milan Nic

Report

The EU is at a critical juncture. For the first time since the launching of European integration, doubts about the future of the EU have been raised by mainstream politicians and large swathes of the European public. Read about four political directions that Europe may follow after the EP elections in 2019.

Visegrad Insight is published by the Res Publica Foundation. This special edition has been prepared in cooperation with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and with the kind support of ABTSHIELD.

Download the EP2019 report in PDF