Berlin – ESI presentation at briefing on European perspectives for the Western Balkans
ESI’s Gerald Knaus was invited to speak at an online briefing on European perspectives for the Western Balkans organised by Europäische Akademie Berlin.
The EU-Western Balkans Summit in October ended with a declaration by the heads of state and government of the European Union and the Western Balkan states reaffirming a European perspective and calling for enhanced cooperation. Nevertheless, some countries feel left in the lurch, especially due to the lack of a timeline and concrete prospects for accession.
Gerald said that the current accession process has lost any credibility in the region, and as a result, the EU most of its influence. To revive the process, the EU should offer membership in the Single Market as an interim goal to any of the six Western Balkan nations interested in it.
The other discussants were Franc But, Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia, Berlin; and Majda Ruge, Senior Policy Fellow in the Wider Europe Programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations, Berlin. The panel was moderated by Weronika Priesmeyer-Tkocz, Deputy Director of the European Academy.