Commission launches preparations for the Western Balkans’ EU integration

The Commission has initiated preparations for the inclusion of five Western Balkans states in Community programmes and agencies as of 2005.

On 3 December 2003, the Commission proposed to begin preparations for the inclusion of the Western Balkan countries of Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia and Montenegro in Community programmes and agencies starting in 2005. In its Communication, the Commission expressed its intention to implement the resolutions made at the Thessaloniki European Council of June 2003.

The Commission's aim is to familiarise the countries concerned and their people with the policies and working methods of the EU, thus facilitating their European integration.

As a first step, the Commission aims to conclude a framework agreement in 2004 with each of the five Western Balkan countries participating in the Stabilisation and Association Process.


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