Innovative economy, energy, finance, infrastructure – these are some of the & # 39; traditional & # 39; themes of the 28th Economic Forum in Krynica. Also this year, participants also talk about … leisure industry or agriculture.
Tell in the beginning about the history of the Forum in Krynica.
Zygmunt Berdychowski, the creator of the Economic Forum in Krynica: We started in 1991, but this year the conference will take place for the 28th time, and not for 27, because it was held in 1992 in spring and autumn. The first time 120 people came in a meeting room at the Old Spa House. We discussed four subjects in two days, the most discussed subject being Poland three years after the Solidarity Revolution. Now, after 28 years, there are 3,800 guests and 700 journalists on the forum. That is 4.5 thousand. people. We have 17-18 rooms, in which different debates take place. Last year there were 250. We expect a similar number this year.
The cross-section of guests is also different.
28 years ago the participants were themselves Poland. Now 30% guests come from abroad. Among them are presidents, prime ministers, ministers and exceptional people in the economic life of our part of Europe. Of the approximately 120 people in 1991, the vast majority were politicians, representatives of the business community, maybe a dozen or so. Currently, of 4500 participants at the conference, at least 2 thousand are experts from the commercial sector. This is very important because more than 90 percent. We acquire the Forum budget from the commercial sector. We are not an institution that is in any way dependent on public administration.
Please indicate the crucial moments for the Economic Forum in Krynica.
First in 1993. Early elections took place. I was then Member of Parliament and member of the Sejm in the context of the election committee "Fatherland". Despite the fact that I personally had a huge success, because I achieved the highest absolute number of votes in my constituency, we did not exceed the electoral threshold. If the Forum were to be made for any political involvement, after such a deep political change the conference would cease to exist. But then parliament member Józef Oleksy, who at that time became chairman of the Sejm and earlier participated in our forum, decided that his presence in Krynica was clear. That is the truth, the conference saved. If Józef Oleksy had not been there, I think none of the institutions would want to participate.
How do you rate the most important distinction of the forum from the perspective of the years, ie the title of the man of the year? In recent years much has been said about the politicization of this prize.
This year marks the 22nd time that we will win the title of Man of the Year. And it was always a purely political distinction. The remarks that the Economic Forum should get the econo prize have always amused me. In Krynica, a special politician receives a prize for his successes. At different times these were different politicians, including President Kwasniewski, Prime Minister Tusk, President of Slovakia, President of Ukraine. And surprise only appeared when Prime Minister Kaczyński and the Prime Minister of Hungary were honored. It seems to me that because of the composition of the chapter, which has more than 40 people, this price reflects the spirit of today. And it is no secret that we make a sharp turn to the right in European and not just European politics. This is how you should read the judgment of people who made the decision regarding the choice of the man of the year.
Can you name some examples from the history of the Forum, when important economic decisions were taken, were important projects announced?
The most important thing for us is the organization of a conference. We never had the ambition to make statements and make recommendations. The cross-section of Forum guests is so great that an attempt to allocate one of those views shared with another part of the participants is completely inconsistent with the mission of the Forum. We decided that participants only go back to Krynica if they get the benefit of being present at the conference itself. But of course there were events during the Forum that were loud. This is, for example, the declaration signed in 2001 by the Heads of the Visegrad Group on the foundations of an innovative economy, the arrival of the President of the European Commission, the two-year prize for the Prime Minister of Hungary, which is in a very emotional Reason spoke about the importance of this award he received in Poland. I would not say that there were a number of important moments every year, but there were certainly many.
Which economic threads can be heard most during the upcoming 28th event?
In this context, it is worth paying attention to two elements – what we are talking about and who will be present. And the discussion will largely focus on the innovative economy and the traditional economy, in which the energy and fuel sectors are extremely important. We will also spend a lot of space on the armaments sector, infrastructure and finance. There should also be a strong thesis on what is now commonly called the leisure industry. We will also remember the areas where less is being talked about, which means a very important agri-food sector. Finally, we break down historical records when it comes to our exports in this area, regardless of whether we have sanctions or not.
Who will appear in Krynica this year?
People who take an exceptional position in economic life. First of all, entrepreneurs and managers who manage these companies. Representatives of the government administration, usually ministers responsible for important economic decisions, representatives of parliaments.
Can you give me names?
As regards representatives of the business community, for example Krzysztof Pawiński, Grzegorz Bierecki, Michał Krupiński, Paweł Surówka, Daniel Obajtek, Filip Grzegoczyk, Henryk Baranowski and Zygmunt Solorz. You can change here for a long time.
And representatives of the state administration?
Some of them are already registered. We are still waiting for some, but I hope this will be a matter of a short time. We can certainly say that Prime Minister of Lithuania will come to Krynica, as well as ministers of transport and environment from this country. There will be the Foreign Minister of Latvia, so we are preparing for a large representation of important people from the Baltic states, whose voice will be heard this year during the Forum. Among the most important people in our country, we have already confirmed six ministers from the government of Mateusz Morawiecki – Elżbieta Rafalska, Anna Zalewska, Piotr Gliński, Łukasz Szumowski, Andrzej Adamczyk and Henryk Kowalczyk. We are awaiting the following registrations, because at the moment the secret is the information that we hold a government meeting in Krynica about health policy. I do not have to add that we are counting on the arrival of Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and President Andrzej Duda, who felt very good in the Sącz region last year.
Is there news when it comes to forum organization?
One of the novelties will be to enter into individual discussions, we want to enable forum participants to discuss important matters with them in peace. We are preparing a special zone of the Economic Forum, where we want to invite the most important and most interesting guests
What additional events will accompany the Forum?
First of all, for everyone who comes to Krynica, there are many different cocktails, banquets, etc. The event is accompanied by more than 30 cultural events – exhibitions, concerts, excursions. And the Forum ends the Running Festival. Approximately 8,000 participated in the last participants.
Are you running to the Running Festival this year?
What goals did you set for yourself?
I'm in the 60-70 percent phase, preparations. In August I would like to drive almost 300 km, so that I can start in a race that lasts three days – nine starts. There is a total of almost 160 km to walk. among others There is a 64 km long run, 5 km running, marathon, running on the downhill route at Jaworzyna Krynicka.
Which result will you meet?
Two years ago, when I participated in this competition, for 101 participants, of whom 77 finished the race, I was in 28th place. I would like to beat this result.
How long does the forum take in Krynica?
For now we have a contract with the self-government of the province of Małopolska, which ends in 2024. We also have agreements with the self-government of Krynica, nowosądecki poviat. The most important thing is cooperation with the self-government of the country, which co-finances the costs of the construction of this enormous area. I think Krynica is worth the event, because when I meet the guests of the Forum, guests of the Running Festival plus people who serve these events, then Krynica at the beginning of September – according to my calculations – visits about 17 thousand. visitors. We do not have to talk about measurable benefits for the city, especially because this event takes place after the holiday season.