About: EU enlargement

Digital & Media 03-05-2021

In Serbia, fake news is spread by state-backed media

Two recent reports focusing on democracy and media freedom by the international NGOs Reporters Without Borders and Freedom House went almost unnoticed in Belgrade. On World Press Freedom Day (3 May), EURACTIV Bulgaria looked at their Serbian neighbour, an EU candidate since 2012.
Enlargement 27-04-2021

Serbia’s Vucic ‘treating the EU as if stupid were its middle name’

Serbian President Alexandar Vučić deflected EU criticism on the worsening situation of rule of law and media freedom in his country, with the help of media under his control. EURACTIV looked at the real picture.
China 16-04-2021

Montenegro tries to cool EU row over $1 billion China road

Montenegro's finance minister on Friday (16 April) tried to ease concern over a near $1 billion Chinese-backed road project, insisting the country could afford to repay the debt and did not need EU help.
Enlargement 02-02-2021

EU regrets Kosovo’s decision to open an embassy in Jerusalem

The European Union voiced regret on Tuesday (2 February) at Kosovo's decision to open an embassy in Jerusalem, made as part of a broader deal brokered by the previous US administration, saying it "diverges" the tiny Balkan country from the EU position.
Enlargement 07-01-2021

EU enlargement in 2021: Moribund or revenant?

In the Western Balkans, where all EU applicant countries (bar Turkey) are located, the year ahead will be dominated by Europe's quest for a vaccine and efforts to restart the economy in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. 
Enlargement 02-01-2021

Scottish leader Sturgeon tells EU ‘We hope to join you again’

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Saturday (2 December) told the European Union "we hope to join you again soon" as an independent nation following Britain's full departure from the bloc.
Enlargement 16-12-2020

North Macedonia slams Bulgaria’s ‘blackmail’ in EU entry process

North Macedonia's foreign minister called on the EU Tuesday (15 December) to end the "blackmail" of his country through the imposition by Bulgaria of fresh obstacles to its membership of the bloc.
Enlargement 16-12-2020

New Montenegro PM vows to fight graft in quest for EU

Montenegro's new prime minister predicted Tuesday (15 December) that his country would be the next to join the European Union and vowed to fight the political corruption that has tarnished its reputation.
Global Europe 14-12-2020

Borrell dreams of ‘making multilateralism great again’

In a strategic article published on Monday, the EU chief diplomat, Josep Borrell, depicts the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on world affairs, warning of growing divergences between world players, backsliding in terms of global poverty and strengthening of the authoritarian regimes.
Enlargement 18-11-2020

Bulgaria spells out conditions for unblocking North Macedonia’s EU path

Bulgaria vetoed the decision to open EU accession negotiations with North Macedonia on Tuesday (17 November), a move which indirectly also affects Albania, another Western Balkans candidate which has advanced on its EU path in tandem with Skopje.
Enlargement 11-09-2020

Revolutionary hero’s identity stands in the way of Skopje’s EU path

Historic figure Gotse Delchev, considered as a national hero both in Bulgaria and North Macedonia, now appears to stand in the way of Skopje’s EU path. EURACTIV Bulgaria reports.
Europe's East 19-06-2020

Eastern Partnership teleconference sets priorities for summit in spring

EU and Eastern Partnership (EaP) heads of state and governments as well as European institution leaders met on Thursday  (18 June) to discuss the COVID-19 crisis as well as reaffirm the strategic partnership and discuss its future. However, the talks...
Enlargement 05-05-2020

EU leaders urge Skopje to solve its historic dispute with Bulgaria

The draft declaration of Wednesday's (6 May) EU summit with the leaders of the Western Balkans, seen by EURACTIV, calls on North Macedonia to find a solution to bilateral disputes in the implementation of the Treaty on Good Neighborhood Relations with Bulgaria.
Enlargement 13-04-2020

To Belgrade and beyond: Beijing exports China model of virus management

Last month, six Chinese medical professionals stepped off an Air Serbia jet in Belgrade to a red-carpet welcome from President Aleksandar Vučić and an array of cabinet ministers. After elbow-bump greetings, Vučić kissed Serbia’s flag, then China’s.
China 02-04-2020

Serbia sets the stage for Beijing’s mask diplomacy

When six Chinese doctors landed in Belgrade two weeks ago, Serbia's president greeted them with elbow-bumps before laying a kiss on their country's flag, a gesture of gratitude that sent Chinese social media aflutter.
Enlargement 24-03-2020

Balkan hopefuls get green light to start EU talks, conditions still weigh on Tirana

EU ministers on Tuesday (24 March) approved starting membership talks with North Macedonia and Albania, a move hailed as restoring "credibility" after months of damaging delays and bickering.
Enlargement 23-03-2020

EU moves to start membership talks with North Macedonia, Albania

The European Council is set to give the green light this week for starting accession talks with North Macedonia and Albania, in a long-awaited move for the Western Balkans after the enlargement process was effectively put on hold last year.
Eastern Europe 09-03-2020

Eastern Partnership’s champions expect more from the ‘geopolitical Commission’

As associated countries of Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova ask for a more ambitious Eastern Partnership (EaP) policy, the debate continues about the next steps and available financial support for what is lauded as one of the EU's most successful foreign policies.
Enlargement 03-03-2020

Albania opposition rallies to stop ‘coup d’état’ over reforms

Thousands of opposition supporters denounced Albania's government at a protest rally on Monday (2 March) in a move likely to deepen a row between the country's president and the socialist administration over judicial reforms sought by the West.
Enlargement 24-02-2020

New Kosovo PM ready to revoke tariffs for Serbian goods

A few years ago, the newly elected Kosovo prime minister overturned Serbian trucks. But Albin Kurti now says he is ready to revoke tariffs introduced by his predecessor on Serbian goods.
Enlargement 20-02-2020

North Macedonia wins EU praise for pioneering coal-to-solar shift

The European Union energy watchdog praised North Macedonia on Wednesday (19 February) for a pioneering project among EU aspirants to transform an ageing coal mine into two solar power plants, in line with goals to cut pollution and tackle climate change.
Enlargement 18-02-2020

Donors pledge an ‘overwhelming’ €1.15 billion for Albania quake recovery

International donors on Monday (17 February) pledged €1.15 billion to help Albania recover from a powerful earthquake last year, the EU chief announced, more than double the sum expected by Tirana.
Enlargement 17-02-2020

EU in ‘frank’ talks with Western Balkan nations seeking membership

European Council president Charles Michel on Sunday (16 February) met with leaders of the six Western Balkan nations seeking to join the EU, for 'frank' talks ahead of a key summit in Zagreb in May.
Enlargement 05-02-2020

Bulgaria warns Serbia over refusal to extradite banker

Bulgaria’s chief prosecutor Ivan Geshev has written letters to the European institutions to complain about Serbia’s refusal to extradite a banker held responsible for what is considered Bulgaria's theft of the century, hinting it might affect Serbia's EU membership bid.