“Europe needs to secure stability for neighbouring states” the participants of The Rīga Conference 2015 discuss on first day.

07.11.2015. 09:30

Welcoming more than 500 participants, the first day of the high level security and defence forum The Rīga Conference 2015 concluded yesterday. The global economic challenges and opportunities, and the role of NATO in securing global stability were discussed on the daily agenda.

In the opening panel, “The Rise of Geoeconomics” the Vice President of the European Commission Valdis Dombrovskis said that “It would be short-sighted to mend the EU economy without considering wider political aspects, such as the on-going developments in our neighborhood. The EU needs to ensure that its neighbours are both politically and economically stable. We need to work closely with our key strategic partners that share our value of democracy. To that end, it is paramount to restore piece in Ukraine, turning it into a safe growing economy. It is in the mutual interests of the Ukrainian people and EU.” Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk concluded that “If you have a strong energy policy, then you need to play no games” when talking about the need for energy independence in Europe.

In the panel discussion on “NATO in Defence of Global Stability”, the dominating questions revolved around Russia and the Middle East. The former deputy supreme commander of NATO Forces in Europe, Sir Richard Shirreff in the beginning of the discussion confessed that “the NATO forces can train in the Baltic States, but that’s not enough, because Russia can simply use an opportunity when such arises”. Kurt Volker of McCain International Leadership Institute at the Arizona State University noted that the U.S. cannot lead the NATO alone, because only all member states can achieve results.

Today, in the conference’s concluding day the attention of participants and speakers will be focused on four discussion panels, where various opinions and proposals will be discussed about the most touching issues right now. The morning session “Quo Vadis 21st Century Russia” will be followed by a discussion on the new generation warfare, propaganda and its influence, and about the Future of the European order, in which the Slovakian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Miroslav Lajčak, will take part in.

Discussions and the coffee break conversations will be available for live broadcast on The Rīga Conference 2015 homepage, www.rigaconference.lv, the Foreign Ministry homepage www.mfa.gov.lv, and on Delfi.lv, LA.lv, LSM.lv, irir.lv, The Baltic Times, Hromadske International, the Lithuania Tribune. For the first time you can watch the conference on the LMT Straume service.

The live broadcast participants are encouraged to participate in the discussions and share opinions on Twitter by using the official hashtag – #RigaConf, as well as ask questions to panellists. The working language of the conference is English.

About The Rīga Conference 2015

The Rīga Conference 2015 is one of the most important security and foreign policy forums in the Baltic Sea region, welcoming more than 500 state leaders, experts, diplomats, academics and media representatives from 40 countries. For the second time, the conference at taking place in the National Library of Latvia.

Conference is organised by the Latvian Transatlantic Organisation (LATO) in cooperation with Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defence of the Republic of Latvia. The event is supported by the North Atlantic Treaty Association (NATO), Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, SAAB, The German Marshall Fund (The Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation), the Embassies of the U.S.A., the United Kingdom, Canada, and Georgia in Latvia, Riga City Council, Georgian wines “Askaneli Brothers” and Amber Distribution, the European Commission Representation in Latvia, Riga Shipyard, Latvian Railway, Connection Codes. The conference is powered by airBaltic, Riga International Airport, Audi Latvija, Møller Auto Rīga un Møller Auto Lidosta, Latvian Mobile Telephone. Informative supporters: Latvijas Televīzija, DELFI, LETA, LSM.LV, Latvijas Avīze, Magazine Ir, Hromadske International, Postimees, the Lithuania Tribune, The Baltic Times.

Further information about the conference, agenda, participants and broadcast is found on www.rigaconference.lv

Information prepared by:

Mr Aivis Indans

The Rīga Conference 2015

Media Coordinator


Tel: +371 2 455 8300

E-mail: aivis@lato.lv