Slovakia – Prime Minister Robert Fico could lead the fight of the V4 against the lower quality food products of brands in Central Europe. The V4 stands as one to pressure the European Commission to make legal changes in order to solve this situation.
A day before the V4 summit on July 19, Robert Fico declared his readiness at leading the fight on bad quality branded food products. “This has to stop,” said the Slovak PM, explaining it was more of a political problem than a technical one. “If we feel that the European Commission is not in this spirit, we are ready to take unilateral temporary measures,” he said. For the Slovak government, this situation is not taken seriously enough by the European authorities. Establishing new committees and commissioning new quality tests is not enough, claimed Fico.
Therefore, Slovakia is ready to take some concrete measures, as for example including instructions for public institutions to only purchase Slovak products for their catering services. If the European Commission does not take steps by September, Slovakia will.
Fico also expressed his thoughts on using the European Citizens Initiative option. With one million EU citizens votes, the Initiative would push the European Commission to make a statement on the case and possibly take concrete action, including a legislative answer.
On July 19, the V4’s PM made a common declaration. For them, it is “unacceptable that [their] consumers are treated differently and in a discriminatory way.” The V4 intends to push together the European Commission to act in order to solve this situation, and “urge further and detailed examination of the problem at Union level”.
“The Visegrad Group countries are united and strongly committed to finding a solution which guarantees the fulfilment of the legitimate right of all consumers throughout the European Union to have access to the same quality products”, ends the joint statement of the four Prime Ministers.