"The countries of Central and Eastern Europe and also of Southern Africa are in a period of dramatic change. In both regions we are going through a process of transformation. The circumstances in our various countries are very different, but I believe we do have common goals. We want to achieve firmly based democratic societies, with productive and equitable economic systems. We also want to find lasting ways of living in peace and co-operation with our neighbours in an increasingly interdependent world. We can all identify with these goals; the means of achieving them, however, creates the problems. In frankly facing the problems at this conference, we shall attempt to share experiences and to learn from each other."