Ukraine’s Path to EU Membership Open

The European Union leaders will formally accept Ukraine as a candidate to join the bloc on Thursday, an ambitious geopolitical move triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. However, the EU will face another major overhaul as it starts an enlargement process once again.

European Commission President von der Leyen said the move will be historical head of a two day summit that will kickoff the bloc’s most ambitious expansion since accepting Eastern European states after the Cold War.

Von der Leyen said she was not just talking about Putin’s war of aggression but the applications of Moldova and Georgia, as well as Ukraine which she called “a wind of change”.

The decision during the summit will have a symbolic meaning that signals the EU’s intention to reach deep into former Soviet territory. But it will likely take Ukraine and Moldova years – and perhaps more than a decade – to qualify for membership.

While Ukraine and Moldova’s process of EU candidacy will be accepted on Thursay, Georgia will be given a “European perspective” but told it must fulfill conditions before winning candidate status.

Behind the joyous rhetoric however, there is concern about the bloc’s coherence and unison as it looks to enlarge further.

After starting in 1951 as an organization consisting of six countries to jointly regulate their industrial production, the EU now has 27 members that face complex challenges from climate change and the rise of China to the war in Ukraine.

The bloc’s indecision over enlargement has slowed progress towards membership for of Balkan countries including Albania, Bosnia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia, whose leaders will meet their EU counterparts in Brussels on Thursday morning.

A lack of progress has led to disillusionment from some countries. Leaders of Albania and Serbia even considered not attending the meeting, but agreed to join the meeting eventually.

But Ukraine’s fast track to formal candidate status has increased their feeling of being sidelined. That is a big risk for the EU as Russia and China could take the opportunity to extend their influence in the region.

German Chancellor Scholz said that the EU must “reform its internal procedures” to prepare for the accession of new members. He particularly singled out the need for key issues to be agreed with a qualified majority rather than by unanimity.

The requirement for unanimity often congests EU ambitions because member states can block decisions or reduce them to the lowest common denominator.

Despite some major crises in recent years, including a wave of migration, Brexit and the rise of nationalism, the European Union remains popular. According to a European Parliament survey, nearly two thirds of Europeans call EU membership a “good thing”, the highest result in 15 years.

Need to access the insight?

Start your 7-day free trial now

Need to access the insight?

Start your 7-day free trial now

Need to access the insight?

Start your 7-day free trial now

Do you need to access special insights on this matter?

Start your 7-day free trial  and become a member today

Subscribe to Top Insights Today

Subscribe to Executive Newsletter Top Insights Today

The Executive Newsletter -Top Insights Today- puts global business events in perspective through special insights

Join the ranks of global executives and subscribe to Top Insights Today

Top Insights Today covers insights on energy, clean-tech, oil&gas, mining, rare earths, defense, aviation, infrastructure, manufacturing, electrical vehicles, big-tech, finance and politics of business

By clicking subscribe you agree to our privacy and cookie policy and terms and conditions of use.

Read more insights

Germany to Accelerate Its Green Hydrogen Venture in Australia

Germany has stepped up its efforts to develop green hydrogen work with Australia, as the country plans to quickly ditch fossil fuels especially following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Hyundai, Kia Look for Ways to Cope with U.S. IRA Tax Credit Rules

South Korean automakers Hyundai and Kia, which combined gained the No. 2 spot in U.S. electric vehicle (EV) sales after Tesla, are set to become the biggest victims of the new rules under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) that halts subsidies for EVs made outside North America. The two companies sold more than 39,000 EVs in the U.S. in the first seven months of this year, doubling last year’s sales and surpassing Ford, Volkswagen and General Motors in the process. 

U.S. Senators Propose “Taiwan Policy Act of 2022”

Two U.S. senators, Menendez-D and Graham-R, introduced a bill on Thursday that proposes an increased support for Taiwan, including billions of dollars of U.S. security assistance and changes to the law that for decades determined Washington’s unofficial ties with the island.

Stay informed

error: This content is protected !!