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Ilhan Kyuchyuk: In a time of global constrains, the EU is showing its openness to the Balkan region

EP Plenary session- Explanations of votes - Withdrawal Agreement of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union

The members of the Foreign Affairs Committee voted with a strong majority in favour of a report containing the European Parliament’s recommendation on the enlargement of the Western Balkans during a remote meeting of the Committee held today.

The vote on today’s report was adopted after the revised enlargement methodology published by the European Commission in February, expected to give a new impetus, predictability and dynamism to the enlargement process, gave enough confidence to the hesitant Member states that their concerns are taken into account, which led to the Council of Ministers’ decision to give green light for opening the accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia.

The EP recommendation report underlines that enlargement has been one of the EU’s most successful policies contributing to extending democracy, peace and prosperity across Europe and that the prospect of EU membership has been a drive for reforms in the Western Balkan countries. It insists for the EU to provide clear and consistent accession benchmarks, continued support and improved progress measuring throughout the process. It further stresses the need to improve the coherence between the enlargement process and political developments in the EU, to encourage gradual participation in EU programs prior to accession and engage the accession countries in the Conference for the future of Europe.

Following the vote, Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Standing rapporteur for North Macedonia and Vice-coordinator for Foreign Affairs of the Renew Europe group said: “Our group, Renew Europe strongly believes that the enlargement of the EU to the Western Balkans has to be made a success story. The reform of the EU and the quest to shaping its way forward into the future can and should go hand in hand with the enlargement process. This recommendation sends a clear support to the European perspective of the Western Balkan countries. Especially now, when Europe and the world are facing constrains due to the unprecedented crisis of the coronavirus pandemic, we are showing our openness towards the region. Our goal is to ensure that the enhanced methodology sets clear and more predictable rules and criteria and applies them consistently, and that this leads to full-fledged EU membership as a final goal. By endorsing the revised methodology and by supporting the Council decision to open accession negotiations with both Albania and North Macedonia, European Parliament once again shows its commitment to the region”. 

Тази публикация е достъпна и на следните езици: Bulgarian