This analysis has three predominant goals. The first is to provide a retrospective overview of the political and economic changes in Poland after its accession to the European Union in 2004. The second is a prospective one, which aims to analyze the Polish perspective on the Visegrad cooperation as well as on European integration in the next years. The third is to present a foreign policy strategy for Poland until 2020.
The concept of regionalization is one of the backbones of this analysis. In the current context, the role of the Visegrad Group (V4) – as a subregional grouping within the EU – should be perceived as crucial. A smart V4 cooperation will not lead to further fragmentation of the EU. On the contrary, the process of regionalization will be transformed into an effective “minilateralism”. The Visegrad Group can be regarded as the best example of cooperation in the minilateral format, with Polish participation. It is an antidote to the newly voiced skepticism to EU integration. Its foundation was built on the ability of these four countries to propose projects and initiatives that go beyond the common denominator of purely regional interests, leading to a formation of a coalition with other countries (V4 Plus).