The Prime Minister of Lithuania Saulius Skvernelis is the 28th Krynica Economic Forum’s Man of the Year. The award is given to people whose behavior and accomplishments had the greatest impact on Central-Eastern Europe.
The award was presented by Polish PM Mateusz Morawiecki. In his acceptance speech, Skvernelis highlighted how Poland and Lithuania are connected by their approach to the European Union.
“Poland and Lithuania share views on the European Union; we are for a Union of sovereign nation states whose national interests are accordingly represented. Changes in the EU must go in such a direction, that no country will feel discriminated,” he said.
The Lithuanian PM also said that Poland and Lithuania’s stance on migration are similar. “We are against forced relocations and support the strengthening of borders, so that Frontex will work,” he added.
We are for a Union of sovereign nation states whose national interests are accordingly represented. Changes in the EU must go in such a direction, that no country will feel discriminated
Skvernelis underlined that the Lithuanian government will “never support sanctions on Poland”.
“I think that the values which connect us are much stronger and more important. If we will only discuss interests while forgetting shared values, I think that such a perspective would be extremely sad,” he said.
Skvernelis, born in Kaunas and a former lawyer and policeman, is one of the most popular politicians in the country. Just behind president Dalia Grybauskaite and ahead of the chairman of the ruling party LVZS Ramunas Karbaukis.
In previous years, the title of Man of the Year was awarded to, for example John Paul II, Lech Wałęsa, Donald Tusk, Jarosław Kaczyński and Prime Minister Viktor Orban.