Seventh B.I.O. International Conference

Danube River Bonds: Bio-Environment – Bio-Culture

 Bratislava City Hall

June 3-6, 1997

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Crucial decisions on “Environment and Development” for the countries traversed by the Danube, was taken by 80 leading experts, from 20 nations, during the international conference on “Danube River Bonds: Bio-Environment – Bio-Culture” that was held in Bratislava, June 3-6, 1997. The conference was organised jointly by the Biopolitics International Organisation and City University Bratislava.

This conference was the first to address the need for the development of new institutions for co-operation among the Danube countries. The Danube, one of the largest European rivers, traverses 10 nations (Germany, Austria, Slovak Republic, Hungary, Croatia, Yugoslavia, Romania and Moldova) and influences the lives and livelihood of millions of people. Tracing the economic and social development patterns, but also the historical and cultural links among the Danube countries, can offer insight for the development of future co-operation models. In addition, in view of the pending expansion of the European Union, the time is ripe to re-examine prospects for co-operation and focus on the growth of commercial and cultural relations, using the Danube as a common point of reference. As the river itself has suffered serious deterioration due to environmental pollution, the development of long-term multilateral initiatives, for its restoration and protection, can reform diplomacy and bring all these nations together, in a common cause.

The conference focused on the following issues:

  • Pending expansion of the European Union – new profiles in leadership and diplomacy
  • Economic transitions: mixing markets, laws and cultures
  • Bio-diplomacy and bio-ethics: lessons from history
  • Trade, transportation, tourism and communication: new trends for international co-operation
  • Evolution of a river: bio-diversity, history and culture
  • Bio-education and academic policy
  • Waterways and waterworks: international co-operation and conflict resolution
  • Current concepts in pollution prevention and resource conservation
  • Forest ecosystems and soil preservation
  • Legislative norms in water management
  • Paths to building a civic society: democracy and civilisation

The conference was attended by representatives from governments, academic institutions, business corporations, non-governmental organisations and the diplomatic corps. Participants included the Deputy Prime Minister of Moldova, Mr. G. Ozhog, the Minister of Environment of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Mr. J. Aleksyc, the Minister of Environment of the Slovak Republic, Mr. J. Zlocha, the Ambassador of the European Union to the Slovak Republic, Dr. George Zavvos, additional members of the Slovak delegation (the General Secretaries of the Ministry of Transport, Post and Telecommunications Mr. Szabo, Environment, Mr. J. Zec, and Culture, Mr. P. Panis) the Mayors of Bratislava, Mr. P. Krea, Dunajska Luzna, Mr. L. Cingel, Kosice, Mr. R. Schuster, Chisnau Mr. A. Paladi, the Vice-Chairman of the Legislative Committee of Freedom of Speech and Mass Media of the Ukrainian Parliament, Mr. V. Alekseyev, the President of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Professor L. Kuznicki, the Ambassadors of Sweden, Mr. K. Falkman, Greece Mr. P. Vlassopoulos and Indonesia, Mr. I. Abidin, the Rector of Mendeleyev University of Chemical Technology of Russia, Professor P. Sarkisov, the Vice-Rector of the Budapest University of Economic Sciences, Professor G. Bora, the Director of Environmental Studies at Ankara University, Professor R. Keles, the President of System International Foundation Ltd., Dr. L. Kapolyi and the Chairman of the Hellenic Foreign Trade Board, Mr. J. Tzen.

A panel discussion was held at the Gabcikovo Waterworks during the last day of conference. The panel was chaired, jointly, by the Presi