EU enlargement [What Think Tanks are thinking]
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EU enlargement [What Think Tanks are thinking]

12 June 2023


The European Union has found new impetus for enlargement in the wake of Russia’s war on Ukraine, making progress in what was once called the EU’s most successful policy. A year ago, the EU granted Ukraine and Moldova official EU candidate status and also opened the same possibility for Georgia. Politicians and analysts more and more often say that the EU should become more involved in the Western Balkan countries, which saw their membership prospects open 20 years ago. If it does not, those countries could drift away politically from the Union and exacerbate conflicts in the post-Yugoslav area. For Turkey, EU membership is no longer a priority, while popular support for EU accession is declining in Serbia, partly due to the influence of Russia. ‘There is a new awareness inside the EU. We finally realise that it is not enough to just wait for our friends outside the Union to move closer to us. It is not enough to say that the door is open. We must also take responsibility to bring the aspiring members of our Union much closer to us,’ European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said at the GLOBSEC conference in Bratislava in May. This note gathers links to the recent publications and commentaries from many international think tanks on enlargement and issues with EU accession countries.

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foreign affairs