BELGRADE – On Monday, November 7, the European Policy Centre (CEP) will organize the discussion “EU Enlargement to the Western Balkans in the light of the war in Ukraine”, where representatives of the European Commission and enlargement experts from the region.
The year 2022 has reaffirmed the fact that enlargement is one of the key geopolitical instruments of the European Union that is necessary for securing the Continent’s peace, stability, security, and prosperity.
“The outbreak of the unjustified and unprovoked Russia’s aggression of Ukraine has not only brought back the issue of enlargement to the top of the EU’s agenda but encouraged out-of-the-box thinking in terms of how to accelerate enlargement and end the impasse while keeping the progress in the rule of law and fundamental rights at the forefront”, CEP stated.
The organizers announced that in such a quickly changing environment, the levels of anticipation of the European Commission’s annual reports for the Western Balkan partners were exceptionally high.
They recalled that On 12 October, the European Commission adopted its 2022 Enlargement Package, offering a comprehensive assessment of the state of play and the progress made by the Western Balkan partners on their paths towards the EU.
The 2022 Enlargement Package will be presented by Mr Maciej Popowski, Acting Director-General for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, followed by reactions from: Srđan Majstorović from CEP, Haris Ćutahija (Foreign Policy initiative BH, Bosnia and Herzegovina), Marko Sošić (Institute Alternative – IA, Montenegro), Arber Fetahu, (Group for Legal and Political Studies – GLPS, Kosovo), Ardita Abazi Imeri, (European Policy Institute) – EPI, Skopje, Alban Dafa, (Institute for Democracy and Mediation – IDM, Albania)
The aim of the event is to gather relevant regional and EU experts and officials who will untangle what has been done so far in the key areas and discuss what remains to be done to make sure that the recommendations and benchmarks from the 2022 Enlargement Package are implemented effectively and efficiently.
“To acquire multi-layered answers, the panelists from think tanks from all Western Balkan partners will give their inputs at this event organised jointly by the Think for Europe Network (TEN) and the Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)”, CEP announced.