Romania proposes its own EU accession road map

The Romanian government has proposed its own road map to conclude accession negotiations in the first half of 2004 and join the EU in 2007.

The Enlargement Commissioner Günther Verheugen has announced that the European Council in Copenhagen will issue a revised pre-accession programme for Bulgaria and Romania for their accession negotiations after 2004. Bulgaria has closed 21 negotiating chapters, but Romania only 13, and Bulgaria has recently made more progress than Romania, according to EU diplomats.

Both countries lag behind in implementation of macro economic reforms that would allow long-term growth and improve living standards. The two countries are among the poorest in Europe: the average monthly income in Bulgaria is around 125 euro, and in Romania around 100 euro.

The EU is also concerned with widespread corruption in both countries.


The Romanian government has adopted its own road map for accession negotiations, according to which it would conclude negotiations under the Irish Presidency, in the first semester of 2004.

TheRomanian governmentstated that "progress registered in the economic field, in the adoption and implementation of theacquisand in accession negotiations set the grounds for an updated road map conducive to the conclusion of the negotiations in the first semester of 2004. That would "allow enough time for drafting, signing and ratifying the Accession Treaty with Romania before 1 January 2007," according to the government.

Romania has recently angered the EU by signing a bilateral agreement with the US on immunity from the International Criminal Court despite the Union's warning that the candidate countries should wait for the EU's common position on this issue.Commissioner Verheugensaid that Romania's move will be reflected in the Commission's progress report on enlargement, due to be published on 9 October 2002.


Romania and Bulgaria have not fulfilled the conditions to join the EU in its 2004 enlargement wave. Both countries need to make further efforts to meet the criteria for EU membership, and will receive addition aid from the Union to help them prepare. A new road map for accession negotiations with the two countries is to be issued at the European Council in Copenhagen on 12-13 December 2003. The two countries aim to join the EU in 2007.


The European Council of Copenhagen (24-25 December 2002) is to adopt a new pre-accession strategy and road map for enlargement negotiations with Bulgaria and Romania.


Subscribe to our newsletters