Enlargement

Elections 18-12-2019

Serbia will not rush to join the EU until it is truly ready

As Serbia heads into an election year, the rhetoric of political parties rise. In an exclusive op-ed for EURACTIV.com, Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabić says a fair election requires all parties to participate and present their vision in order to give people a real choice.
17-12-2019

State capture threatens Serbia’s EU integration process

For years, Serbia has been labelled as one of the frontrunners for EU accession in the Western Balkans, being one of two countries in the region currently negotiating membership. Unfortunately, there is little truth in this perception, write representatives of the Serbian opposition.
Energy 11-12-2019

Coal pollution in the Western Balkans is a European problem

16 coal plants in the Western Balkans pollute as much as the entire EU fleet of 250 units, causing sickness and deaths across the continent. It’s high time to take action, write Viola von Cramon and Petros Kokkalis.
27-11-2019

Harnessing the potential of French proposals for the benefit of Western Balkans

In recent days, the discourse on the Western Balkans’ EU accession has been dominated by discussion of the (in)famous French non-paper, finally explaining the thinking behind the changes in the enlargement methodology announced earlier by President Macron. Milena Lazarevic explains how the French proposal might work.
08-11-2019

A new momentum for progress in the Western Balkans

The EU decided last month not to open membership talks with Albania and North Macedonia just yet and a  broader discussion on the future of the EU is ongoing. But there is positive economic momentum in the Western Balkans, with more foreign investment coming in, and it needs to be maintained, write Borge Brende and Martina Larkin.
15-10-2019

Leaders must take action, giving signals is not enough

The EU should allow North Macedonia and Albania to sit at the EU accession negotiations table this week - anything else would be a grave political mistake, argues Sergei Stanishev.
14-10-2019

Failing to deliver on Albania and North Macedonia will haunt the EU

When the European Council gets together on 17-18 October to decide on the opening of accession talks with North Macedonia and Albania, they will also be making a decision for the future of the European Union, writes Akri Çipa.
07-10-2019

What does it take for the EU to punch above its weight?

Since the start of the financial and economic crises in 2008/2009, the EU project has lost a considerable part of its standing. A recent forum has raised ideas for reversing the decline of the EU’s ranking in the global arena. Dušan Reljić explains how.
10-07-2019

Will New Democracy undermine the positive momentum in the Western Balkans?

Following New Democracy’s return to power there are concerns in Brussels, Berlin and Washington about changes in Greece’s policy towards its Balkan neighbours, write Alexandra Voudouri and Ioannis Armakolas.
24-06-2019

Let’s set things straight: Accession talks do not equate EU membership promise

Statements that starting EU accession talks with a candidate country directly implies membership are false. Sena Marić explains why communication of enlargement  - both by EU institutions and in the member states - should be based on facts and not on dangerous play with words and emotions.
17-06-2019

Will Brussels turn its back – again – on the Balkans?

Will the EU honour its word to Tirana and Skopje or will Brussels – not for the first time – leave the Western Balkans stewing in its own juice? All eyes are on the reaction of EU foreign ministers to last week's inflammatory rhetoric by two Balkan leaders, writes Denis MacShane.
Global Europe 07-06-2019

Turkey’s stalled membership will define the future and meaning of the European Union

The EU cultivates the impression that it is desperately cheerleading Ankara’s accession, only to be disappointed. In fact, letting Turkey join would entail a decision over the future of the European Union which no one, for now, seems ready to make, writes Faisal Al Yafai.
24-05-2019

Macron and the EU enlargement make-believe

French politicians’ fear of losing votes in the elections jeopardizes the dream of uniting Europe, writes Srdjan Cviijic.
12-02-2019

The EU must grant visa free travel to Kosovo

The EU finally needs to make good on its oft-repeated promise to grant visa free travel to Kosovo, says Behgjet Pachouli.
11-02-2019

Why Kosovo needs to postpone the ‘final’ round of dialogue with Serbia

Kosovo's leaders have got themselves in a serious political crisis. They need to re-set the clock and the agenda of talks with Serbia, write Leke Batalli and Perparim Kryeziu.
04-02-2019

Ditching unanimity is key to make enlargement work

The EU must change its procedure and allow qualified majority voting in all intermediary stages of the EU accession process, writes Srdjan Cvijic.
21-01-2019

Tsipras kills three birds with one stone with North Macedonia deal

With the North Macedonia name change deal recently reached between Athens and Skopje, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has achieved more than improving his international image, by putting pressure on his domestic opponents, writes Nikolaos Koutsimpogiorgos.
10-12-2018

EU’s Balkan enlargement policy must now be guided by geopolitics

While the EU has played for time, delaying the EU enlargement process largely because of its own problems, the geopolitical context has changed, writes Vladimir Krulj.
14-11-2018

South-East Europe needs zero-priced capital to boost growth

The region of former Yugoslavia and Albania has long ago been swallowed up by the EU. Yet, it is doomed to permanent marginalisation unless the EU does not open its structural and cohesion funds, or provide other source of zero-priced capital, writes Dušan Reljić.  
China 19-10-2018

China in the Balkans: Motivations behind growing influence

Beijing’s influence in the Balkans continues to grow, but we should not compare it with Russia. Chinese influence differs in both motives and tools used for its spreading, writes Matej Šimalčík.
12-10-2018

Visa liberalisation for Kosovo: The only tangible result for the foreseeable future

Visa liberalisation for Kosovo could prove crucial in maintaining leverage for the region, while alllowing for more time to seek a sustainable solution with Serbia, writes Donika Emini and Zoran Nechev.
08-10-2018

After ‘failing a referendum’, who gets to use the name ‘Macedonia’?

Following the recent setback in the referendum held in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Prime Minister Zoran Zaev’s decision to proceed with new elections might be the only way forward, writes Neophytos Loizides.
17-09-2018

For a peaceful border correction between Kosovo and Serbia

The peaceful border correction with Serbia is an opportunity for mutual recognition between Kosovo and Serbia that should not be missed, writes Hashim Thaçi.
30-08-2018

Kosovan and Serbian Peace: The EU’s next big foreign policy win?

Reaching a deal for the full normalisation of the relations between Belgrade and Pristina is of crucial importance also for the EU, although time is running out, writes Bekim Çollaku.

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