EU faced a powerful migrant crisis, is political and public appetite for expansion has dwindled. Now, EU has to find the strategic capacity to address this actual issues and to be warmer on accepting new members, for example, from Balkans, WSJ reported.
The European Union is changing, Britain is set to leave the EU next year. and that hat move has shaken the bloc to its foundations and a group of nations led by France insist that the EU must first clean its own house before it invites anyone else in. French President told journalists at an EU-Balkans summit in the Bulgarian capital Sofia that EU should expand to be able to cope with the current issues:
“The last 15 years have shown a path that has weakened Europe by thinking all the time that it should be enlarged,”
Emmanuel Macron said.
Belgian Prime Minister supported France, adding that modern EU should be deeply reformed to function more efficiently. Charles Michel stressed in his speech “at the same time the Balkans countries have to reform their ways of functioning; more stability, more security, more respect for the rule of law.”
The growing Russian, Turkish and Chinese influence in Europe made the Western Balkans one of the European Union’s most pressing security challenges, so, all 28 nations should find an optimal way to cope with these issues as soon as possible. The EU welcomed in 10 mostly Eastern European nations in 2004, then Bulgaria and Romania three years later. Croatia was the last country to join in 2013.
Newcomers like Hungary and Poland saw their economies boosted by billions of euros in so-called cohesion funds meant to build up their infrastructure, but their leaders now refuse to share the burden of responsibility for sheltering refugees. Brussels is also concerned about moves in both countries that it considers to be undermining the independence of their justice systems.