Germany urges EU ‘reform roadmap’ ahead of enlargement

Annalena Baerbock, German FM

© APA | Annalena Baerbock, German FM

# 02 November 2023 18:07 (UTC +04:00)

Germany’s foreign minister on Thursday called for a “European Union reform roadmap” aimed at ensuring the bloc is ready for enlargement, APA reports citing Anadolu Agency.

“As far as the internal EU reforms are concerned, we don’t have yet such a roadmap and we should change this now and develop such a roadmap under the Belgian presidency of the council. A roadmap for the reform of the European Union,” Annalena Baerbock said in a speech at a conference on EU enlargement in Berlin.

“We should now identify concrete priorities for the reforms that we want to tackle in the coming years,” she added.

The EU Parliament and the EU Commission should be “closely involved” in the reform process which would “lay the foundation on which we can ensure that European Union is fit for an enlargement, fit for the future,” she said.

Baerbock stressed that this process is going “to be difficult” and “would take a lot of time.”

Reiterating the need “to strengthen the EU,” Baerbock stressed that EU enlargement had become “a geopolitical necessity.”

The official list of EU candidate countries includes Ukraine, Moldova, Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Serbia, and Turkiye. Georgia and Kosovo are also considered "potential candidates."

At the conference, foreign ministers from EU member states and candidate countries gathered in Berlin to discuss enlargement and reforming the bloc’s decision-making process.

The conference kicked off with a keynote speech by Baerbock.

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan and his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba are also attending the conference.