Enlargement Archives

  • Ending state capture in the Balkans – bridging the gap between EU words and deeds

    03-04-2018

    The EU is still failing to address the issue of state capture in the Balkans and, by choosing stability over democracy in the region, has been undermining its own credibility and values. But now it must take strong actions in view of the 2025 admission perspective, writes Shpend Ahmeti.

     

  • The Berlin Process in the new enlargement strategy

    27-03-2018

    Since its first summit in Berlin in 2014, the Berlin Process - a regional cooperation initiative bringing together seven key member states and the six Western Balkan countries - has provided a unique contribution to regional cooperation, writes Ardian Hackaj.

  • Time for Juncker to help Bosnia-Herzegovina with a bridge from Dayton to accession

    26-02-2018

    Two years after it applied for EU candidate status, Bosnia and Herzegovina will hand over the answers to the Commission’s questionnaire this week. Now it falls upon Juncker to hold BiH to its membership aspirations and the reform commitments expressed, writes Ivan Pepic.

  • Two cheers for Balkan Boris

    16-02-2018

    UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has come in for plenty of criticism in his 19 months in post. But there is one area of foreign policy where he has been faultless and where indeed Britain can play a leading role in shaping Europe’s future direction of travel, explains Denis MacShane.

  • A crazy idea  for a Western Balkans innovation agenda

    22-01-2018

    If the EU plans to use the same old carrots and sticks to push the region further into enlargement territory, we are all in a situation ripe for disappointment, writes Georgi Kamov.

  • Balkan coal power costing lives, urgent action is needed

    Air Quality 14-12-2017

    More than 60,000 premature deaths in Europe could be prevented over the next decade if urgent action is taken on air pollution from Europe’s dirtiest coal-fired power plants, write Dragana Mileusnić and Ioana Ciuta.

  • Four (and a half) reasons why Schengen would be better off with Bulgaria and Romania

    12-12-2017

    The refusal to extend the Schengen area to Bulgaria and Romania is a blatant example of lack of solidarity, disrespect for commitments and disregard for the EU’s own decision-making process, writes Sergei Stanishev.

  • Albania 2018: Preparing for a breakthrough

    04-12-2017

    Albania looks to the EU to show that it recognises its potential as a partner, by starting accession negotiations in the spring of 2018. Ditmir Bushati explains why the next six months, under Bulgaria's presidency, will be of crucial importance.

  • EU expansion receives an unlikely boost

    28-11-2017

    Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has a strong motivation for giving a boost to the largely stalled EU enlargement process, writes Sir Michael Leigh.

  • Reversing negative trends in the EU’s neighbourhood policy

    Global Europe 22-11-2017

    With the Eastern Partnership (EaP) Summit this Friday (24 November) and the Bulgarian Presidency in January 2018, the EU is at a juncture where it can reverse a very negative trend and breathe new life in its neighbourhood policy, Harry Nedelcu writes.

  • EU enlargement: Tear down mental walls in the Balkans

    05-10-2017

    Last week the European Commission dealt another blow to the Western Balkans by promising an accession strategy for Montenegro and Serbia while neglecting the other four Balkan countries, Hashim Thaçi, the president of Kosovo, writes in an exclusive op-ed for EURACTIV.

  • Two ways to settle the border issue between Slovenia and Croatia

    08-09-2017

    The international arbitration court decision is balanced and reasonable and Slovenians and Croats should be able to live with it, writes Žiga Turk.

  • Turkish-EU relations need common sense

    Global Europe 14-07-2017

    We are living in a world of vast differences and constant changes, yet there is often opportunity to be considered in our approaches in order to tackle the negatives and highlight the positives, writes Egemen Bagis.

  • EU enlargement: A six percent target for the Western Balkans

    11-07-2017

    If the Western Balkans are to overcome almost three decades of economic stagnation and crisis, they will need to double their annual growth rates. This will need a fundamental rethink of the EU’s enlargement policy, argue Tobias Flessenkemper and Dušan Reljić.

  • Kosovo lurches to nationalism as Brussels lets down its friends

    16-06-2017

    Elections in the West Balkans are never easy. Federica Mogherini might consider intervening now on the side of the pro-European forces in Kosovo, writes Denis MacShane.

  • Croatia at a crossroads

    Future EU 19-05-2017

    Croatia’s geostrategic position in the Balkans means the rest of Europe should pay attention to this weekend’s elections, writes Tomislav Karamarko.

  • Dashing Turkey’s EU hopes is the wrong answer

    05-05-2017

    Following Turkey’s constitutional referendum many were quick to announce the end of democracy in Turkey. But Laura Batalla Adam argues that this is a narrow and incomplete reading of the results.

  • Kosovo needs a new beginning

    05-05-2017

    In Kosovo, far too much time has been spent on issues like border demarcation. Delivering peace instead of war is one thing but that is not enough when young people want a good education and their parents want jobs, warns Kosovar politician Kadri Veseli.

  • Turkey-EU relations deteriorate from gentleman’s agreement to sanctions rhetoric

    Europe's East 14-04-2017

    The EU and Turkey should focus on working together, as they have both already proven that they are capable of doing so. The Customs Agreement and Visa Liberalisation frameworks are a good starting point, writes Ahmet Ceran.

  • EU-Turkey relations need structural solution

    Europe's East 11-04-2017

    EU-Turkey relations were boosted in the mid-1990s, when economic ties were upgraded and the 1995 Customs Union Agreement came into effect. Its benefits were widespread. It now needs reform to continue doing good, writes Samuel Doveri Vesterbye.

  • Now is not the time to isolate Belarus

    Global Europe 28-03-2017

    The EU can encourage change in Belarus by offering support and closer ties. Punitive moves to sever ties with Minsk will undo much of the progress that has already been made, writes Igor Merheim-Eyre.

  • Who provokes, who rules, who benefits?

    24-03-2017

    Turkey, or let us say the Turkish president and the government, continues losing prestige in the West with his aggressive and provocative approach. Zakir Gul asks, is Erdoğan paving the way for a one-man-rule presidency with the upcoming constitutional referendum in Turkey?

  • Forget Russia, new menace in Western Balkans is Trump-style populist politics

    20-03-2017

    A new menace is stalking the Western Balkans: the region's political leaders themselves. Many are now retreating from serious engagement with Europe in order to play internal political games, writes Denis MacShane.

  • Brussels’ Balkan approach: Little carrot, broken stick

    13-03-2017

    Once staunchly pro-EU, Kosovars are losing patience with Brussels, which they accuse of prioritising Serbian accession over their own sovereignty, warns the mayor of Kosovo’s capital, Shpend Ahmeti.

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