The summit of “the Three seas”: a step towards the realization of the vision that is whole, free and peaceful Europe?

The heads of States all over Central Europe met in Warsaw to discuss ways to promote regional infrastructure projects.

They were joined by the President of the United States Donald trump. In the summit of “the Three seas”, which convened the presidents of Poland and Croatia, participating countries located between the Baltic, Adriatic and Black seas. Participants will be guided by the concept of free, peaceful and United Europe.

After twenty-eight years after the fall of the Berlin wall in the realization of this vision, progress was made. The accession of Central European countries to NATO and the European Union (EU) has contributed to strengthening security, stability and prosperity of the entire continent, and the transatlantic Alliance.

This is a serious success, but the process is not yet complete. Economic and social problems of Europe and new challenges in the field of security has been added to the list of things to check on the completion and consolidation of the project of European integration, which is crucial for stimulating and strengthening the prosperity of the EU as a whole.

The main challenge is to overcome the problems with the infrastructure legacy.

More than half a century after the end of world war II communication infrastructure on the continent was focused on the development axis East-West. During the cold war, the pipelines supplying the Soviet oil and gas in Central and Eastern Europe, has also served as tools of domination and control. After the fall of the Berlin wall, the countries of the region understandably have focused on the integration of their economies with the advanced Western markets, while neglecting the development of internal infrastructure axis North-South.

In 2015, Croatia and Poland undertook the accelerated construction and modernization of cross-border energy, transport and telecommunications infrastructure in Central Europe. These projects promise to simultaneously enhance economic interaction between the national economies of the Three seas and between the region and Western Europe.

The implementation of the summit of the Three seas will lead to positive strategic consequences for Europe. First, it will create a powerful network of economic arteries, including pipelines, power lines, roads, Railways and telecommunication lines that mobilize the economic potential of the region, which is home to 105 million people with total GDP of 3.3 trillion dollars.

Moreover, the extension of energy networks in the region of Three seas will allow to diversify the sources of energy for the countries of Central Europe. This will lead to greater energy security.

Taking a broader view, initiative of the “Three seas” (ITM) offers the continent the way a reasonable, sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The use of the economic potential of Central Europe should benefit the entire continent. Central European prosperity is a powerful, though often undervalued, means of improving the economic competitiveness of Europe on global market and its ability to withstand its constant change.

Trump’s presence at the summit would further emphasize the potential ITM. Washington has long recognized that economically prosperous, stable and undivided Europe is more reliable and effective partner in this age of global upheaval. American endorsement of “the Three seas” is fully consistent with the vision of a United Europe, as well as the previous U.S. policy to support energy networks for diversifying the energy resources of the region and Europe as a whole.

The success of the summit will be determined by the unity expressed by the participants, and their ability to set priorities and to implement interregional projects in close cooperation with European institutions. It will be key to ensuring long-term support from not only the EU and USA and other international business communities. Openness, pragmatism, a favorable investment climate, regulatory convergence, partnerships between the public and private sectors, the financial assistance of European funds and ongoing support from the authorities is the path to success.

Infrastructure is the Foundation of economic growth, prosperity and sustainability. It is also a cornerstone towards the creation of a United free Europe and the transatlantic Alliance.