EU – Report on enlargement (October 10, 2012)
On October 10, the Commission presented its annual document on the enlargement strategy and the progress reports on the candidate countries (Turkey, Iceland, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia- FYROM) and the Western Balkan countries.
The Commission recommends granting, subject to certain conditions, candidate status to Albania and opening accession negotiations with FYROM. These documents will result in the adoption of conclusions at the General Affairs Council on December 11. It will then be up to the European Council on December 14 to issue a decision.
We remain attached to ensuring that the candidacies of the Western Balkan countries and Iceland are examined in accordance with the principles established by the European Council in December 2006: a rigorous review, throughout the process, of the individual merits of each candidate country and its actual ability to comply with the conditions of membership; consideration of the Union’s absorption capacity. This is crucial to the credibility of the Union and to ensuring the citizens’ support for enlargement.
France shares the Commission’s analysis regarding the pace of the enlargement process. This is dependent on the ability of each state to fulfill the accession requirements and to implement the necessary reforms, notably with respect to human rights.
The Commission’s report also underlines the importance of reconciliation and regional cooperation for the candidate countries and the Balkan countries. We fully share these goals which must guide the mobilization of the countries concerned.