Today: Tuesday, 23 April 2024 year

The head of the European Council called the possible terms of EU enlargement.

The head of the European Council called the possible terms of EU enlargement.

The European Union must be ready to accept new members by 2030, according to the draft speech of the head of the European Council, Charles Michel, which he is due to deliver on Monday in Slovenia.

“If we want to be trusted, we must talk about the timing. <…> While we are preparing the next EU strategic agenda, we must set a clear goal <…>, we must be ready, on both sides , to expansion by 2030,” the document says.

Michel will speak at the forum in Bled in front of an audience that will include leaders of the candidate countries for joining the community – Moldova, Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The head of the European Council is also said to be going to say that the EU should consider enlargement as one of its main tasks, while noting that “the window of opportunity is open.”

EU leaders will hold their first dedicated discussion on the topic in the Spanish city of Granada in early October.

On February 28, 2022, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky signed an application for the country’s accession to the European Union. The heads of state and government of the EU at the summit in Brussels on June 23, 2022 approved the granting of candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova. The European Commission has set seven conditions. Judicial reform is the most complex among them: the Ukrainian government needs to reform the Constitutional Court, complete changes in the High Council of Justice and the High Qualifications Commission of Judges, and continue the fight against corruption.

As Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olga Stefanishyna said earlier, the Ukrainian authorities do not have time to fully implement all seven EC recommendations by October, but they are working on this issue.

The head of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, agreed that the start of negotiations on Ukraine’s membership in the European Union would take place in mid-December this year.

Obtaining candidate status is only the beginning of a fairly long journey to join the EU. Turkey has been in candidate status since 1999, North Macedonia since 2005, Montenegro since 2010 and Serbia since 2012. Croatia is the latest to join the EU in 2013, a process that took ten years.