The Hungarian National Assembly has always been committed to developing the parliamentary dimension of the Visegrád Cooperation established in 1991. Parliamentary relations have been regular since the 1998 meeting of the chairmen of Foreign Affairs and Defence Committees of the Visegrád Group countries, and consultations between the Speakers of Parliaments have been common since the 2003 Budapest meeting of the Speakers.
Since the signature of the 2014 Budapest Joint Statement of the Speakers of Parliaments on the development of parliamentary cooperation between the Visegrád countries, cooperation has thankfully intensified. More frequent meetings of the Speakers as well as more systematic and meaningful consultations of Committees have confirmed that it is always worth deepening our dialogue and expressing our common position together, especially in times of major challenges related to the European Union. By focusing on common points and by presenting our countries together, we can represent the region as a whole, and thereby we can shape the future of Europe together to the benefit of all citizens. Furthermore, it is also useful to invite partners other than the countries of the Visegrád Group, i.e. to benefit from the opportunities within the framework of the V4+ for pursuing consultations with EU partners outside our region, or even with third country partners.
In addition, I believe it is important to increase the visibility of Visegrád and V4 as positive “brand names”, including the visibility of parliamentary cooperation. This has motivated us to launch a website for the parliamentary cooperation of the 2017-2018 Hungarian Presidency, which is also accessible on the current website, and this is what has oriented the work that led to the compilation of a book summarising the outcomes of the parliamentary meetings under the Hungarian Presidency. This publication issued in five languages is also accessible on our website. The aim of our current website has not changed: to present the parliamentary cooperation between the Visegrád countries in its continuity, therefore, in the future we will report on all the relevant parliamentary events on this website.