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Summary of the first day of the European Economic Congress 2011

EEC - 25-05-2011

European competitive economy, the New Order of the EU, Central and Eastern Europe, EU energy policy as well as clusters, Polish-Chinese cooperation and healthcare systems were the leading themes of the first day of the largest business event in Central Europe.

The opening session of the European Economic Congress - EEC - in Katowice was attended by Jerzy Buzek, Chairman of the European Parliament, Donald Tusk, Polish Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán, Hungarian Prime Minister, Jadranka Kosor, Croatian Prime Minister, Petr Nečas, Czech Prime Minister and Antonio Tajani, Deputy Chairman of the European Commission and the EU Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship.

‘As far as our Presidency of the European Union is concerned, we have aspired to deepen the EU market and we wanted to reach the turning point in the EU energy system. We have promoted, and will continue to promote, the expansion of the European Union. We intend to close the accession process for Croatia. We agree with our friends from Poland that we should still expand European integration.’ - said Viktor Orbán, the Prime Minister of Hungary during the celebrations of the opening of the EEC 2011.

The first of the Congress thematic debates was about the European competitive economy. The session was moderated by Roman Młodkowski, the editor-in-chief of TVN CNBC, and was attended by Janusz Lewandowski, EU Commissioner for Budgetary and Financial Programming; Harry van Dorenmalen, Managing Director IBM Netherlands, President IBM Europe; Volker Hoff, Deputy President, Adam Opel AG; Eli Leenaars, Member ING Management Board Banking, Chief Executive Officer Retail Banking Direct & International; Peter Mandelson, EU Commissioner for Trade in 2004-2008, UK Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills in 2009-2010, and Surojit Ghosh, Member of the Management Board, ArcelorMittal Poland SA, who together defined the priorities of European economic policy and discussed the ingredients for effective rivalry in global markets, the EU financial forecast and the ‘New EU’ after the experience of the economic crisis.

Eastern and Central Europe – community of interests, challenges and problems was opened by Lech Wałęsa, the President of Poland in 1990-1995. The debate was attended by: Zdenĕk Bakala,

One of the wealthiest Czechs and the owner of the New World Resources group; Sándor Demján, the wealthiest Hungarian and the President of TriGranit Development Corporation; Jan Kulczyk, the wealthiest Pole and the Chairman of the Supervisor Board of Kulczyk Investments and Indrek Neivelt, the Estonian economist and banker, one of the most influential people in Estonian business, Chairman of the Supervisory Board in Ldiamon. The panelists shared their knowledge about the functioning of the regional economy, and analyzed its economic and social situation and development forecast. The latest CEED Initiative Report (Central Eastern Europe Development Initiative – an international project that originated at the European Economic Congress 2010), which presented the economic situation and economic forecast for Central Europe, was also presented during the debate.

The next session was dedicated to EU energy policy, including the climate-energy package and the common EU energy policy. The debate began with a speech by the Minister of the Environment, Andrzej Kraszewski, and Kristián Takáč, the Secretary of State in the Slovakian Ministry of Economic Affairs. Among the panellists were also Per Langer, Deputy President of Fortum Oyj; Dariusz Lubera, President of the Management Board, General Director of Tauron Polska Energia SA; Paweł Olechnowicz, President of the Management Board, General Director of Lotos SA, Chairman of the Directors’ Council, Central Europe Energy Partners; Filip Thon, President RWE Polska, Member of the Management Board RWE East; Tomasz Zadroga, President of the Management Board PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna.

The national meeting of healthcare managers also took place on the first day of the EEC 2011, which summarized the conferences that have taken place in the last few months in five Polish cities, as did the workshops on managing urban spaces held within the Fifth International Conference, City 2011 and the debates on clusters as the means for innovatory growth in the economy, and Polish – Chinese economic cooperation.

The sessions of the first day of the European Economic Congress 2011 took place in the building of the Academy of Music, in the Qubus Hotel, the Angelo Hotel and in the Assembly Hall of Bank Śląski.


The European Economic Congress 2011 in Katowice is the largest business event in Central Europe. The hundred issue-based sessions, debates and accompanying events will be attended by approximately 6000 guests from Poland and abroad.

PTWP S.A Group, a publisher of Nowy Przemysł (New Industry) monthly and of the web service, is the co-organiser of the European Economic Congress, along with the Province of Silesia, the Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia and the City of Katowice.