Dr Danilo Türk, Former President of the Republic of Slovenia, said in his address to the networking reception at the Bled Strategic Forum that the title of the event, Safeguarding the Future, may seem paradoxical at first glance. However, looking at it more deeply, the future is not what will happen tomorrow; the future is what we are doing today, and by doing that today, we are producing what will happen tomorrow, Mr Türk said.
He referred to comments made in the afternoon by Mr Žiga Turk, Former Minister of Education of the Republic of Slovenia, that politicians must distinguish between feel-good and do-good politics.
“How do we distinguish between the two? … Do-good politics requires recognising mistakes and admitting them. And it requires a very careful choice about what will happen tomorrow. How does a politician change the world? Politics has this unusual capacity to change the world,” stressed Mr Türk.
This applies both to national and international politics. According to Mr Türk, there is some degree of symbolism in the fact that the BSF takes place immediately after the G20 meet in China. “I am not suggesting that we can aspire to the power level of the participants of the G20, but we have an important part of the responsibility.”
A number of questions has also arisen in the United Nations, and they have to be addressed more vigorously and with a greater sense of collective and common responsibility.
“Challenges before us are enormous, we have to demonstrate that we are able to really move the world forward. But we have the platform that we did not 30 years ago,” Mr Türk said in reference to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Moreover, it is now generally understood that development cannot take place without security, he indicated.
Security was also mentioned by Mr Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization, who stressed that there were forces of darkness that would like to “keep us back”. “But we should not give in, we have to fight against this together.”
Opening remarks were delivered by Mr Janez Škrabec, CEO of RIKO, BSF’s strategic partner. He stressed that politicians had “the toughest job in the world, because they face complex problems and there are so many of them”. “But politics should not only be for politicians, we, the civil society and businessmen, also have to deal with politics,” he added.