Open Access

The Visegrád Group as a Vehicle for Promoting National Interests in the European Union: The Case of the Czech Republic

   | Aug 02, 2017


This contribution asks whether sub-regional integration projects such as the Visegrád Group may be understood as mechanisms for pursuing one Group member’s national interests while it stands at the European Union’s helm. I assess this question based on the case of the first Visegrád Group member to assume the EU Council presidency: the Czech Republic. Examining three specific policy areas – the reinvention of the EU’s Eastern neighbourhood policy; the strengthening of EU energy security; and the incorporation of a stronger human rights and external democratisation approach into EU foreign policy – this case study presents a mixed picture. It confirms the potential of the Visegrád Group to be a vehicle for furthering the national preferences of one Group member while it holds the rotating EU Council presidency. Whether or not this potential is fully realised will depend primarily on the degree to which the interests of the four Visegrád countries converge.

Publication timeframe:
2 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Social Sciences, Political Science, other, International Relations