Enlargement Archives

  • The EU-25’s view of Turkey’s membership bid

    Central Europe 17-12-2004

    Turkey's drive to enter the EU as a full member has reached a
    critical phase: in December, the EU summit will decide on whether
    to open accession talks with Ankara. The leaders of the 25 member
    states would need to reach a unanimous decision, and the
    decision in turn would need to be convincing to the member states'
    citizens. The challenge is huge for all sides concerned.

  • Dutch Presidency: Priorities [Archived]

    Security 03-07-2004

    The priorities of the Dutch presidency are further EU enlargements, justice and home affairs, giving the EU a wider role in external relations, the sustainable growth of the European economy and the financial perspectives for the period 2007-2013.

  • Industrial Policy and de-industrialisation

    Science & Policymaking 06-05-2004

    Industry leaders and politicians alike have voiced their fears about the EU's manufacturing base moving out of Europe to benefit from cheaper labour, lower social costs and more flexible regulation in the East. In 2004, the Commission published a communication 'Fostering structural change: an industrial policy for an enlarged Europe', which examined the competitiveness of European industry, assessed the existence and scale of the risk of de-industrialisation and proposed specific solutions.

  • Enlargement and the euro

    Euro & Finance 16-10-2003

    All future members of the European Union will be
    eligible to join the European single currency, the euro, in
    accordance with the provisions of the Maastricht Treaty. The
    ten countries that are due to join the EU on 1 May 2004 have
    all expressed interest in joining the eurozone at the earliest
    possible time. However, monetary integration may take longer
    for some future members, notably Poland and Hungary, whose
    budget deficits are deteriorating while unemployment is
    soaring. The future members will also have to make further
    efforts toward catching up to EU levels of income per capita,
    which requires hard work in the area of labour markets and
    fiscal policy reform.

  • EU regional policy after enlargement

    Regional Policy 16-10-2003

    The EU's regional policy will come under
    pressure when the Union enlarges to 10 mostly poor new Member
    States in May 2004. The Commission is expected to present its
    first proposals for the 2007-2013 EU budget by the end of 2003,
    with Regional Policy Commissioner Michel Barnier insisting on
    undiminished regional development aid.

  • Dealing with corruption in Central and Eastern Europe

    EU Priorities 2020 30-09-2003

    The Commission has been monitoring corruption in
    the future EU Member States since the beginning of the
    enlargement process in order to allay fears of European
    citizens about ethics of governance in Central and Eastern

  • EU membership perspective for the Balkans [Archived]

    Central Europe 24-07-2003

    The Commission adopted a Communication on the Western Balkans and European Integration on 21 May 2033, proposing pre-accession type relations with the region. A new European Integration Partnership is to be created under this proposal as an instrument for monitoring the progress of the reform process in the Balkans countries.

  • Next wave of enlargement [Archived]


    The EU will continue enlarging after the current wave, which will add 10 Member States on 1 May 2004. Bulgaria and Romania could join the EU in 2007 if they fulfil all the membership criteria. Turkey's candidature will be reviewed at the end of 2004, and Ankara will be able to start accession negotiations with the EU if it fulfils the Copenhagen political criteria. Croatia formally applied for for membership in the EU on 20 February 2003, and the Council asked the Commission on 14 April 2003 to submit its opinion on this application. In its second annual Stabilisation and Association Process report, released on 26 March 2003, the Commission said that the enlargement process would extend to Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia and Serbia-Montenegro after the planned accession of Bulgaria and Romania in 2007.

  • Impact of enlargement on EU institutions


    The EU's enlargement from 15 to 25 Member States
    on 1 May 2004 carries significant implications for the
    decision-making and the institutional architecture of the
    Union. The first effects of enlargement have become manifest
    when the EU institutions opened up for observers from the 10
    future Member States in May 2003. The 10 future members now
    have the right of attending Council meetings and having MEP
    observers in the European Parliament until the time of

  • CAP and rural development

    Agrifood 22-07-2003

    Enlargement strengthens the case for more
    support for rural development in the EU

  • Enlargement: The Treaty of Accession


    The Treaty of Accession is an international
    agreement concluded between current and new Member States of
    the European Union. In accordance with the provisions of the
    Treaty on the European Union, the Treaty of Accession defines
    the accession conditions of the new Member States and the
    consequent adaptations and adjustments of the Treaties on which
    the EU is founded.