Vienna, Oct 5 (IANS) European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has said he is against the nationalism of Europe, and permanent dwarfing of Europe.
In an address on Thursday in Vienna marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of Austria, Juncker noted the EU does not wish to develop into a “United States” model, but must also move on from “dwarf” nations of the past, Xinhua reported.
He warned against growing nationalism and populism within the European Union (EU), but acknowledged he could understand the position of some of the critics of the project.
Austria presently plays a significant role as a bridge-builder here, he noted, and has made a strong contribution as a backer of the EU. He believed that Europe’s capacity for global affairs is an important issue for him.
Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz for his part praised Austria as “one of the best countries in the world,” with much diversity, strong economic growth, social welfare, and where all levels of politics “work well together.”
He also acknowledged the importance of the EU for Austria, and said his country is actively involved in having a say on the European level.
Juncker was a guest at the event, along with numerous prominent Austrian officials including President Alexander Van der Bellen and Chancellor Kurz as well as the state governors.