This website is an archive of the work of Marietje Schaake in the European Parliament between 2009 and 2019. Marietje can be reached at marietje.schaake@ep.europa.eu

Press release: Western Balkans moving closer to EU but progress is not uniform

Marietje

Ivo Vaigl (Zares,Slovenia) and ALDE group spokesperson on Croatia noted that "notwithstanding all the difficulties, Croatia has made solid progress in many areas. The Croatian government will have to remain ambitious and work hard in order to conclude negotiations in 2010.

 ALDE Press release, 15.10.2009

Croatia Ivo Vaigl (Zares, Slovenia) and ALDE group spokesperson on Croatianoted that "notwithstanding all the difficulties, Croatia has made solid progress in many areas. The Croatian government will have to remain ambitious and work hard in order to conclude negotiations in 2010. In particular, progress needs to be made in strengthening the judicial system, economic structural reforms, in fighting organised crime and corruption, as well as in moving forward with the return of refugees and Croatia's cooperation with ICTY." Serbia Jelko Kacin (LDS, Slovenia) EP rapporteur on EU-Serbia relations, welcomed the Commission's analysis and balanced conclusions: " There is a recognition of progress and achievements, but also some justified warnings that could delay negotiations", said Kacin. "Recognition is also merited for the Government of the Republic of Serbia, which has shown a commitment to European integration and has in many areas prepared legislative proposals in line with EU standards. However, efficient implementation of these in practice is often weak." added Kacin. Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Norica Nicolai (PNL, Romania),  ALDE Shadow on the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, welcomed the Commission's recommendations on the start of accession talks for EU membership for the small Balkan nation.  "With a difficult history and beset my many problems, Macedonia has shown a significant capacity for reform. Its resilience and progress are and deserves a place in the European Union" said Nicolai. Macedonia is at the moment a leader for the Western Balkans in its fight against corruption, organized crime, justice reform, as well as many other accession chapters. "Issues like the long running name dispute with Greece will hopefully be resolved within the accession framework," she added. Albania Marietje Schaake (D66, Netherlands) responded to the Commission's report on Albania: "I welcome the encouraging progress report released by the Commission on Albania and would like to urge the Commission and Council to start work on the opinion of Albania's accession application. The process towards meeting all criteria needs to be taken carefully, yet the EU already has had a positive impact on the reform process in areas such as democratization, prosperity and respect for human rights in Albania as well as neighbouring and candidate countries." Kosovo Annemie Neyts (OpenVLD, Belgium), ALDE spokesperson on Kosovo welcomed the fact that the Commission committed itself to starting a visa dialogue with Kosovo as with other neighbouring Balkan countries. This is seen as one practical step towards closer EU integration in the future.

 responded to the Commission's report on Albania: "I welcome the encouraging progress report released by the Commission on Albania and would like to urge the Commission and Council to start work on the opinion of Albania's accession application. The process towards meeting all criteria needs to be taken carefully, yet the EU already has had a positive impact on the reform process in areas such as democratization, prosperity and respect for human rights in Albania as well as neighbouring and candidate countries." Kosovo Annemie Neyts (OpenVLD, Belgium), ALDE spokesperson on Kosovo welcomed the fact that the Commission committed itself to starting a visa dialogue with Kosovo as with other neighbouring Balkan countries. This is seen as one practical step towards closer EU integration in the future.