Hahn: 2018 will be crucial year for the Western Balkans’ EU accession process

Johannes Hahn; Photo: European Council

TIRANA – EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn and Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias held an official meeting in Athens during which they discussed on enlargement policies of the European Union and especially about enlargement policies related to Albania and Macedonia, reports agenzianova.com.

”The next year will be crucial in the accession process of the countries in the Western Balkans, European Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations”, Johannes Hahn, said in a speech at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP) on Friday, according to ANA-MPA news agency.

“2018 will be a crucial year and an opportunity to promote the accession of the western Balkans,” Hahn said, adding that the EU needs to restart the enlargement process by convincing candidate countries and member states of the EU that the European integration is in the interest of both parties.

Hahn said repeatedly that the EU will not accept in its midst countries which have unresolved problems with their neighbours. “We do not want that. It is a lesson from the past,” he said.

He also said the Commission will announce on February 2018 its Strategy for the Western Balkans, without providing more details.