9th Vienna Economic Forum

Quo vadis, Europe? Regional Cooperation for European Integration

For the 9th time, President Dr. Erhard Busek and Secretary General Ambassador Dr. Elena Kirtcheva had the great pleasure to welcome in the wonderful location of Palais Niederösterreich around 480 participants from 36 countries throughout the world on 18-19 November 2012.


The motto was  “Quo vadis, Europe? Regional Cooperation for European Integration”


  • Regional Cooperation for European Integration
  • Growth and Finance - Motors in New Frameworks. Infrastructure and Innovative Locations. The Fresh Wind
  • The Danube Region – European Challenges. Energy, Transport, Logistics. Social Responsibility
  • Ministerial Session: Quo vadis, Europe? Exchange of Ideas from the Southeast European Perspective

Former Vice Chancellor Dr. Erhard Busek, President ofVienna Economic Forum, and Secretary General Amb. Dr. Elena Kirtcheva were pleased to welcome on the Opening Day of the Forum H.E. Dr. Johannes HahnEuropean Commissioner for Regional Policy as Speaker of Honour, Dr. Georg PölzlCEO of Österreichische Post AG, and also numerous partners and members of Vienna Economic Forum, with whom Vienna Economic Forum has also a Memorandum of Understanding:

  • Ms. Müjgan SUVER, President of the EU and Human Rights Platform, Marmara Foundation, Turkey, Strategic Partner of Vienna Economic Forum
  • Prof. Agni VLAVIANOS ARVANITIS, President and Founder, Biopolitics International Organization, Greece,  Strategic Partner of Vienna Economic Forum
  • Mr. Rudi GURAZIU, Chief Executive, International Business and Diplomatic Exchange (IBDE), London, Strategic Partner of Vienna Economic Forum
  • Amb.  Mr. Alain Brian BERGANT, Secretary General, Bled Strategic Forum, Strategic Partner of Vienna Economic Forum, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia
  • Mr. Alex MUNTEANU, Managing Director Private Equity at Dragon Capital, Chairman,Business Advisory Council (BAC SEE), Thessaloniki, Strategic Partner of Vienna Economic Forum

It was a pleasure for President Dr. Erhard Busek, and Secretary General Dr. Elena Kirtcheva, to congratulate Dr. Georg Pölzl, CEO of Österreichische Post AG, to the Nomination of Österreichischen Post AG with the „Vienna Economic Forum Award for the Partner of the Year 2012“,  in the frame of the Opening Ceremony.

A Memorandum of Understanding with Strategic Partners of Vienna Economic Forum was signed with:

  • Confederation of the Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria – CEIBG, Sofia
  • International Business and Diplomatic Exchange – IBDE, London

On the second day of the Forum President Dr. Busek and Secretary General Dr. Kirtcheva welcomedH.E. Dr. Erwin Pröll, Governor of Lower Austria as Guest of Honour, who held a Welcome Statement in the First Opening Plenary Session.

It was an honour for Vienna Economic Forum to welcome H.E. Dr. Maria Fekter, Federal Minister of Finance of the Republic of Austria, with a Main Statement on the 9th  Vienna Economic Forum as a speaker with the topic „Growth and Finance – Motors in new Frameworks“.

In her Welcome Statement Dr. Elena Kirtcheva underlined the role of the 9th Vienna Economic Forum in the region Southeast Europe and gave an overview on the success story of Vienna Economic Forum.

Vienna Economic Forum received the Status as INTERNATIONAL NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATION in the year 2011 and the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations accepted in its meeting of July 2012 the recommendation of the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and granted to Vienna Economic Forum “Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations” .

Dr. Herbert Stepic, CEO of Raiffeisen Bank International AG and Member of the Board of Vienna Economic Forum pointed out the strong role of the banks in the region and underlined the good relations between Austria and Southeast Europe.

H.E. Mr. Werner Faymann, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria and Patron of Vienna Economic Forum, took part in the Forum for the fourth time. He pronounced the importance of cooperation in the region and the role of Vienna Economic Forum .  The function of Austria and its neighbours in the heart of Europe was expressed with the words: "Austria is a reliable partner for its neighbours. The cooperation with the countries of Central and Southeastern Europe is a basis for the success. Also in economically difficult times.", said Mr. Faymann.

The „Vienna Economic Forum Award 2012  - for his contribution to the economic development on the national and regional level in the countries of Vienna Economic Forum” was handed over in the frame of the Ministerial Session “Quo vadis, Europe? Exchange of Ideas from the Southeast European Perspective” to:

H.E. Mr. Werner Faymann, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria and Patron of Vienna EconomicForum,

H.E. Mr. Igor Luksic, Prime Minister of Montenegro, Patron of Vienna Economic Forum, and

H.E. Ms. Mimoza Kusari-Lila, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade and Industry of Kosovo.

Further high-ranking guests were:

  • H.E. Mr. Besim BEQAJ, Minister Economic Development of Kosovo
  • Ms. Bernadette GIERLINGER, Vice Minister, Federal Ministry of Economy, Family and Youth of the Republic of Austria
  • Dr. Cristian DIACONESCU, Former Minister for Foreign Affairs of Romania, Presidential Adviser of the President of Romania
  • Dr. Johann SOLLGRUBER, Representation of the European Commission in Austria, Head of political department

Besides the VIP guests, Prime Ministers, Deputy Prime Ministers and Ministers from the member states also the following partner organisations of Vienna Economic Forum were represented:

  • Business Advisory Council for Southeast Europe (BAC), Thessaloniki,
  • Bled Strategic Forum
  • The Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEİK),
  • EastEuroCo Executive Search Group, Budapest,
  • European Center for Environmental Economy (ECEE), Sofia,
  • Institut für den Donauraum und Mitteleuropa(IDM), 
  • Österreichische Industriellenvereinigung (IV),
  • Marmara Foundation, Istanbul
  • Organisation für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (OiER),
  • Southeast European Cooperative Initiative (SECI)

The team of Vienna Economic Forum is pleased to announce the 10th Jubilee Vienna Economic Forum on 24-25 November 2013 in the wonderful location of Palais Niederösterreich in Vienna. 

Vienna Economic Forum thanks all cooperation partners, members and partners of Vienna Economic Forum for the continuous support and also for the support of the 9th VEF:

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  • Kosovo
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Vienna Economic Talks - Meet Turkey in Vienna, 18-19 Juni 2012

Turkey – Important Player in the Regional Economy

On 18-19 June 2012 Vienna Economic Forum held the event “Vienna Economic Talks – Meet Turkey in Vienna 2012” under the motto “Turkey - Important Player in the Regional Economy”.

Topics were:

  • Turkey - Partner with Dynamic Economic Development
  • Turkey - Important Player in the Regional Economy 
  • Experiences and Concrete Success Stories - Ask the Pioneers of Regional Cooperation
  • Share your Visions - Economic Perspectives for the Region

After two successful conferences of Vienna Economic Talks in the years 2007 and 2011 in Istanbul, and as an answer to the more and more intensive Austrian-Turkish economic relations and to welcome high ranking representatives of the Turkish economy in Vienna, Vienna Economic Forum was proud of the large interest of Austria, Turkey and the whole region of Vienna Economic Forum.

President Dr. Erhard Busek and Secretary General Dr. Elena Kirtcheva could welcome 190 participants from 16 countries (apart from Austria and Turkey also Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, Kosovo, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Switzerland).

Also a high-ranking delegation from Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEIK) under Mr. F. Sadi Gücüm, Member of the Board of Cukurova Holding A.S. and Member of Vienna Economic Forum was welcomed, and a high delegation of Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation (TÜRKONFED) under its President Mr.Erdem Cenesiz.

During “Vienna Economic Talks – Meet Turkey in Vienna 2012” a Memorandum of Understanding between Vienna Economic Forum and Turkish Enterprise and Business Confederation (TÜRKONFED) was signed, to deepen the cooperation between the two organisations.  

In the frame of the event and as an important sign of the growing economic relations in different sectors of the regional cooperation, the opening of a new branch of  DenizBankAG, Member of Vienna Economic Forum, was celebrated in Baden. The opening took place with MrHakan Ates, CEO of DenizBank Financial Services Group, together with MrAhmet Mesut Ersoy, CEO of DenizBankAG Austria and Member of Vienna Economic Forum. As representative of the Government of Lower Austria  and representing Governor Dr. Erwin Pröll Ms. Dipl.Päd. Erika Adensamer welcomed the many participants.





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Vienna Economic Talks - Sofia Meeting, 3-4 April 2012 in Sofia

On 3-4 April 2012, Vienna Economic Forum organised in cooperation with the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) “Vienna Economic Talks - Sofia Meeting” under the motto “Liberalisation of Market in the Region South-Eastern Europe” in the headquarters of BCCI.

Dr. Erhard Busek, President of Vienna Economic Forum, and Amb. Dr. Elena Kirtcheva, Secretary General, had the pleasure to welcome approximately 190 participants from 16 states (Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Kosovo, Croatia, FYROM, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, and Slovakia).

The meeting under the Patronage of Prime Minister and Patron of Vienna Economic Forum, H.E. Boyko Borrisov, the Bulgarian Government was strongly represented. The Bulgarian Minister of Regional Development and Public Works, H.E. Lilyana Pavlova, the Bulgarian Minister of Labour and Social Policy, H.E. Totyu Mladenov, the Bulgarian Minister for Transport and ITC, H.E. Ivailo Moskovski, the Bulgarian Deputy Minister of Economy, Energy and Tourism, H.E. Valentin Nikolov, as well as the Deputy Mayor of Sofia, Mister Doncho Barbalov, participated at the meeting.

The liberalisation of markets in the region is an important prerequisite to strengthen economic relations. The liberalisation of the energy market, of the labour market of post service, of radio frequencies and of electronic services in the region, as well as the protection of competition and experiences of foreign investors in different sectors were the main topics of Vienna Economic Talks - Sofia Meeting 2012.

Interesting Statements and discussions about the above mentioned topics led to numerous contacts and business of pragmatic character, to which all participants contributed actively.

Vienna Economic Forum thanks all its members for the active participation at „Vienna Economic Talks - Sofia Meeting“ and especially the following partners for their support:




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