European Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement, Olivér Varhelyi, on Thursday, said the EU would present a ‘new way of thinking’ about enlargement which will include ten candidate countries or countries with an EU perspective.
In his preliminary remarks during the press conference following the informal meeting of General Affairs Ministers on 28 September in Murcia, Varhelyi stressed that “in that report, we not only want to move forward, but we want to provide the mean for accelerated integration and that is going to be out a growth plan for western Balkans which should be based on 4 pillars.”
“First to push for and create incentives for socio-economic reforms to enhance growth and through that accelerate the accession path of the region.
Second, we want to create the opportunity to gradually integrate these countries already in the single market and for freedoms if you will already before accession, because this will be for the benefit of the both European Union and the candidate countries.
The third pillar would be to strengthen our work in relation to the reforms in the rule of law and democracy because of course the credibility of the process is instrumentalized by the notion of having the fundamentals at the core of the enlargement process.
The fourth, we want to provide the necessary tools to close the economic and social gaps,” he added.