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Online event
The 2020 Enlargement Package: still causing a stir ?

Thursday, 22 October 2020


Florian Bieber
Professor of Southeast European History and Politics, University of Graz
Maciej Popowski
Acting Director-General, DG NEAR, European Commission
Milena Lazarevic
Programme Director and co-founder, CEP, Belgrade


Corina Stratulat
Senior Policy Analyst, European Policy Centre

Last week, the European Commission published the 2020 enlargement package, which was initially planned for May. It sets out the Commission’s policy on enlargement and includes detailed assessments of internal developments over the past year and the state of play on fundamental reforms in the Balkan countries aspiring to EU membership. The tone of the reports seems more positive for Albania and North Macedonia, which received the green light for the start of negotiations in March, than for the other aspirants in the region. Across the Balkans, however, the hundreds of pages of review speak of limited progress in key areas.


What are the Commissions main recommendations on the reform priorities for the different countries? How have the countries reacted to the evaluations received and do the country reports still matter? How is the new methodology for enlargement reflected in the Commission’s package? Will the Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans help the Commission stimulate reforms and development in the region? How can the profile of the enlargement dossier be raised in the EU and the Balkans, given the COVID-19 crisis?  Our speakers will discuss these and other issues.


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