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In 2013, Croatia became the newest Member State of the European Union. Seven or eight countries are now widely seen as likely candidates to follow them in and eventually join the European Union. However, with the EU still struggling with ever-present economic malaise, plenty of critics are lining up to warn that “bigger isn’t always better” when it comes to European integration.

No new countries are likely to join the 28-nation bloc until at least 2015, with some arguing that the EU won’t be ready to take on new members until 2020. There are also several roadblocks in place for some of the candidate countries. Kosovo’s independence, for example, is not recognised by all EU countries, although a surprise Serbia-Kosovo deal, brokered by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton in 2013, paves the way for its eventual EU membership. Turkey has been pushing for membership for decades, and it could still be at least 15 years before negotiations can be completed, especially with the EU so divided over whether Turkey should even join at all.

The other Western Balkan countries have all been told they can one day follow Croatia into the EU, as long as they make progress on democratic and economic reforms. However, a dispute with Greece over the name “Macedonia” has frozen that country’s membership prospects seemingly permanently. Iceland was keen to pursue membership after the financial crisis rocked the tiny Atlantic nation in 2008, but a new eurosceptic government recently suspended membership talks altogether. Finally, with Scotland set to vote on independence from the UK later this year, could Edinburgh be the next to apply for EU membership?

To read some in-depth analysis of the progress made by Western Balkan nations towards EU membership, be sure to check out the recent report published by our sister think-tank, Friends of Europe

All of the party manifestos published so far for the European Parliament elections in May mention enlargement, with most parties supporting adding more members to the EU. The  Greens want to “keep the door open to future enlargement of the EU“, the  Liberal Democrats say they will focus “on steady EU enlargement” and the  Social Democrats want to “maintain support for EU enlargment“. Only the  Centre-Right say they want to be “more prudent about EU enlargment by taking the EU capacity to integrate new members into consideration before accepting new applicants“. Don’t forget to vote for the party whose position on enlargement you support in our Debating Europe Vote 2014!

But what do Europe’s citizens think? We’ve been covering a series of town hall meetings between citizens and members of the European Commission recently as part of a continent-wide “Debate on the Future of Europe“. The most recent of these meetings took place in Zagreb, Croatia. Neven Mimica, Croatia’s EU Commissioner, answered questions from an audience of citizens.

During the debate, the audience was asked whether they thought Croatia would be able to help its neighbours in the Western Balkans to join the EU. Surprisingly, Croatian citizens seem quite sceptical about the idea, with only 41% saying “Yes” and almost the same amount (40%) answering negatively.

We’ve put together some facts and figures about the Western Balkans EU membership prospects in the infographic below (and you can click on the image for a larger version).

balkan-info

Which country do YOU think should join the EU next? Is Montenegro ready to join the club? Should Iceland resume membership talks? Or could Scotland be the next EU Member State? Maybe you think the EU is already big enough, and should close the door to new members? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policy-makers and experts for their reactions.

Vote 2014

Voting is closed in our Debating Europe Vote 2014! The results are now in, so come and see what our readers thought!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Justin.li

647 comments Post a commentComment

What do YOU think?

  1. Melina Papa

    serbia has to recognise kosovo as an indepetence state and after that she can join the EU.

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      Why? Kossovo was part of the territory of the Serbian Republic till 1999 when the brutal illegal (regarding Int.Law provisions) NATO attack lead to its secession from Serbia. The EU is against secessionist trends (i.e. Crimea, Scottland, Catalonia etc.). How can the EU raise a legitimate, coherent argument on Kossovo against Serbian candidacy?

    • Limbidis Arian

      Why would they?
      Under what “referendum” ( to Putin’s so-called referendum in the light ) did Kosovo secede?
      Referendums are also held COUNTRY WIDE, not REGION WIDE.

      Maybe my small town wants to secede and become the “Republic of Big Tall Trees” !
      That doesn’t mean we should actually do it.

      Kosovo is an illegal state. The specter of separatism haunts Europe and NO COUNTRY with a “problematic” region will EVER let Kosovo join.
      Their own regions might get ideas.
      Venetia, Catalonia, Scotland, etc

    • dimitri

      should america recognize TEXAS as an inependent state?

    • Mike Pat

      Serbia will be the 29th EU member-state, although the admission is not likely until 2020.

    • Eirini

      and because Kosovo is Serbia, Serbia should never recognize its independence and send the EU to heck.

    • shollim

      Maby if Lombardia separate of Italy by democraty way, Serbia will also recognise Kosovo and Metohija ;-)

    • johan

      No darling Serbia does not have to recognize Kosovo, hence Kosovo is Serbia’s province.

  2. Jaume Roqueta

    I don’t care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members.
    Quotation of Groucho Marx

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      Only when Russia becomes EU member simultaneously!

    • Chris

      Maybe not Buddy. Russia is better in many ways.

  3. Danijel Knezevic

    The truth is there is no such thing as a kosovo people, they are Albanians, who became a majority over time.
    So it’s not likely that Serbia will ever recognise Kosovo as an independent state.
    EU should not accept new members until the existing ones develop enough, especially Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Lithuania, and until Greece, Italy and Spain recover.
    We can only take in Swiss, Norway or Iceland, no one else.

    • Erol

      I disagree with most of the things you said. Firstly, if Serbia wants to become a new member state, it will have to recognize Kosovo as an independent state. That is de facto stated in the Brussels agreement. Secondly, it is in the interest of both Serbia and Kosovo to move forward in the EU membership, and also for Croatia. Especially for Bosnia and Herzegovina. You need to look at the Balkans as on a entangled puzzle, if one peace is missing, the puzzle is not complete. ;)

    • marija

      ah really? and what about macedonians? they do not deserve to live european dream???? even though they have fulfilled the criteria. I dont think that croatia is well developed either,

    • Natsumi

      Spain’s situation is pretty much a result of FMI and troika’s policies. First solve that.

    • dvallance

      I agree I think we have to close the gap between the richest and poorest states in the EU ignoring micro states as they have little sway on the average. Although the addition of the west Balkans will be around 10 million people and by the time the mange to join everything will be quite different anyway so I wouldn’t block there membership. We definitely cannot take turkey it is becoming less democratic by the day and is a country of 77 million people way to big considering the wealth gap plus it would increase the EU land border massively. I think if the EU crisis dissolves we may see Switzerland Norway and Iceland join as they have so much regulation from the EU anyway.

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      We need a real European Union; let the West European Usurers Corporation collapse in order to pave the way of rebirth to the European dream.

    • joanna cove

      ru kidding putin s a monster

    • Natsumi

      We need people like you dissapear XD

  4. Jaume Roqueta

    The club of carbon and steel… they change the name to european union but they are just bussiness men trying to steal all the richness of our contries… I would recomend Serbia to not join us becouse they wont control theyr monetary policy… they will be forced to do the contrary of economic textbooks and comon sense… and if they dont agree, an ex-GolmandSucks banker will be promoted to presiden, will send all the public sector to his freinds for nothing.

  5. Aubrey Williams

    Serbia has work to do, but I can see it becoming a member in some years’ time, sure. Iceland needs to get its act together with regards to its banks and economy.

  6. Jack Davey

    Catalonia, Scotland, Wales, Basque Country, Brittany and Cornwall, will be the next candidates if they want to join.

    • Natsumi

      First they have to separate XD

    • dvallance

      Wales and Cornwall and Brittany are all highly unlikely to become independent maybe autonomous. Scotland at this stage can go either way, Catalonia seems likely to become independent but it might not be recognized same for the Basque country although less likely

    • Yvetta

      They’re already in!

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      The Icelandres are smarter than my compatriots; they have nothing to gain from a usurers gang, namely the West European Usurers Corporation (disguised as “European Union”)!

    • Paul

      Last time I checked, Serbia was 1,500 km away from Russia and Belgrade had never been ruled by Moscow in recorded history, unlike its neighbours. Besides, Serbia is in the last phase of accession to the EU, and will be joining the Union as its next member-state.

    • Joe Kelsall

      My theory is that the USA influenced the EU to accept penniless Eastern European states to leave Russia without a buffer zone from the West. Why else would formerly successful countries take on financial lame ducks? So. If the USA wants these states they should take them as USA protectorates or the UK should drop out of this top heavy organisation. If not, there will be standing room only in the UK.

  7. Danijel Knezevic

    It took almost 10 years for Croatia to enter after opening negotiations, and we had much better starting positions than Serbia.
    It’s hard to imagine that Serbia can enter EU within next 15 years.
    It will more probably be just another perpetual candidate state like Turkey.

    • Paul

      Croatia had similar starting conditions to Serbia, including a border dispute with Slovenia, which is comparable to one Belgrade has with Pristina. Two years since the recommendations for opening of accession talks with Serbia, the country is leading the region in domain of Eurointegrations. EU progress reports speak on that behalf.

    • Jack

      Serbia is not expected to be allowed in until 2020 the earliest. And no Paul, Croatia was in a better economical and governemnt posistion when joining. There us much work to be done in Serbia but they will get there and veventulay br part of the EU.

  8. Veronika Manzanares Alberola

    Iceland does not want to be a EU member, and Serbia must still recognize its mistakes and recognize Kosovo to join it. Maybe Montenegro or Bosnia…

    • Nikola

      How can you talk about Kosovo and Serbia when yourself don’t know how the politics work? where do you come from? imagine your neighboring country takes away the oldest piece of land?! Where is the humanity? And no, Serbia should never chose the european way. Open your eyes, EU are monsters and slavery of the US.

  9. Mateusz

    The European Union should continue its enlargement, and there is no doubt about that.

    However, the main concern here is the EU current condition, not only in terms of its economy but integration. There is a large problem of integrity within the European Union, what can be observed by looking f.e at the UK. With all respect to Montenegro, and Serbia, the European Union should uphold its enlargement, and deepen its integration prior to further enlargement. There is a need of the unity which could make the EU stronger, and bring us secured and stabilized future rather than continue enlargement and leave integration aside.

    We (EU) should have time to recover from the economic crisis and finally to progress with strengthening within, while the member countries would continue its progress to be well prepared to join the EU.

    • Marcel

      Great, more cheap labor that will come to flood our labor market and drive up unemployment and undercut local workers.

      Let’s see:

      -Turkey: never, it is not in Europe
      -Ukraine: never, we cannot afford to subsidize it plus we need to stop the flood of them coming west before it starts
      -Moldova: never, would be another one demanding money at our expense
      -Georgia: never
      -Armenia: never
      -Azerbaijan: never
      -Kosovo: isn’t a country
      -Bosnia: isn’t a country but a super-artificial construct of three groups of which at least one doesn’t want to be and shouldn’t be a part of it (what is this ‘territorial integrity’ nonsense?)

      The biggest question of all, who on earth would pay for it all with all of these poor countries wanting to come in, well mainly their politicians who eye the unelected tax-exempt jobs in Brussels.

      Again, the ‘bottom’ 50-70% (income-wise) in western Europe never benefitted from any accession or ‘open borders’ or the wealth-destroying Euro or anything.

  10. Ahmed AbdEl Khailq

    i guess Georgia will join in two three years max and also Iceland plus Scotland if they decide to get rid of England

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      Obviously you are unaware of international politics and the Yalta-1945 agreements; Georgia and Ukraine are not supposed to be under western economic and geopolitical influense.

    • C.p.

      Haha, yes…. But they have to do all the conditions in the adheration mechanism :p

  11. Dani Alexandrov

    Perhaps Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia? Is Greece still blocking Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia from applying for EU membership with the name thing?

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has to abide by the following terms of the interim agreement:
      1. reform its constitution in order to trace out territorial or other nationalist threats against neighbours (namely the Hellenic region of Macedonia)
      2. cease to cultivate a propaganda based on the looting of Hellenic history and cultural heritage (including e.g. symbols like the Vergina star, symbol of the Macedonian empire of ΦΙΛΙΠΠΟΣ – Philip and his son ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ – Alexander the Great)
      3. reach a compromise over the official international name of the FYRoM with neighbouring Hellenic Republic.

      It seems odd to knock the door of a group of nations without settling the above basic with one of its prominent mebers.

    • marija

      I fully agree with you.

  12. Sara Connor

    that’s not the question. WHO WRITE THOSE THINGS?! the question is: which country will be the first in leaving the UE? let me guess: the one who wrote that lives in the north. and under 20, europe is nearly not able to suport the countries that there’re now!

  13. Andrew Lally

    This is imperial overstretch and the EU shall implode WITHOUT a Marshall Plan II borne by all member states.

  14. Станислав Малчев

    I could say none. Serbia isn’t prepared – the present reforms doesn’t matter anything while the state is living with the nationalism and chauvinism. We do not need a friend that will look as the development and the geo-politics in the region are like a competition.
    Turkey shows its Pax-Ottoman ambitious too.
    At all this region needs more years of social development. Croatia is welcomed, and now are part of EU. May be Bosnia would be prepared soon enough. But the others… So, NONE! :) Sorry, if some1 doesn’t like the truth!

    • HT

      Montenegro should join.

    • Marko NY

      I think Bulgaria should be out of EU because it’s even poorer than EU candidates at this point!

  15. Paul X

    Any country that can bring something to Europe instead of sponging off my taxes…

  16. Ana Georgieva

    I hope our slavery will end one day and all of us here on the Balkans together with the rest of Eastern Europe will make an Eastern European Union. A union that will live and co-operate with the rest of the whole World not for the sake of some nations, and this will happen, when the West and Turkey stop interfering here and tormenting us.

    • Al

      Good point!

  17. Stanislav Malchev

    I could say none. Serbia isn’t prepared – the present reforms doesn’t matter anything while the state is living with the nationalism and chauvinism. We do not need a friend that will look as the development and the geo-politics in the region are like a competition.
    Turkey shows its Pax-Ottoman ambitious too.
    At all this region needs more years of social development. Croatia is welcomed, and now are part of EU. May be Bosnia would be prepared soon enough. But the others… So, NONE! Sorry, if some1 doesn’t like the truth

    • SRB

      wait wait! Serbia is not prepared for EU,but Bulgaria is prepared.I think that EU need to kick out Bulgaria with Romania,because you are not nothing better then Serbia,or Macedonia.

    • Z4

      But your Bulgaria is prepared for EU?? Sorry,but Serbian economy is much better than Bulgarian,if we talk about coruption,Bulgaria and Romania is so big problem for EU.Turkey has Ottoman abitious???You need to read more…

    • Stanislav Malchev

      See? You think you’re the best around, but it was never the truth. It’s just in your logic all the time. Check here: https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=gdp+serbia+vs.+bulgaria
      Where do you see this better Serbian economy? On the corrupt and controlled Serbian TVs?
      The Foreign minister of Turkey, officially speaks about that. Stop watching and reading the sources you’re using. http://www.rieas.gr/research-areas/global-issues/greek-studies-gr/1672-turkey-as-a-regional-power-neo-ottomanism-in-action.html

      And,by the way, some arabe state want to build the biggest mosque in Serbia, aren’t I right?

    • SRB

      Come on,stop with that GDP,you know,i have lot of bulgarain friends,great people and they need to escape from Bulgaria,because salaries is around 150 e per month.I was lot of times in Bulgaria,and i can say that Serbia looks more europen than Bulgaria,sorry but that is a truth.The biggest mosque is lie,and please dont think that Bulgaria is something important in EU,and nobody will ask Bulgaria or Croatia for Serbian entrance in EU.

    • SRB

      Mihail you are totaly right,and im not f***** proud,im just normal citizen,with same problems like bulgarians,greeks have.And we need to support each other,not to degrade.

    • SRB

      Please,it was one movie,and i cant comment art and artist.I dont know why Bulgarians thinks that we are kings,or that we have behavior like kings,so weird.People form Serbia adore Greek nation,also we love Macedonians,we lost confidence in Bulgaria(from historical wiews),but Bulgarians for us is not enemies,or something like that.p.s one my bulgarian friend know by heart all movie ,,black cat,white cat,, and that is one of favorites movies of her.

    • anastasis ven

      Bulgaria and Romania consist the borders of Europe and they have a respective population. They couldn’t miss the EU family! Sure, Serbia and Ukraine will be the next ones to join! It will need a lot of years for Kosovo, Bosnia, FYROM, Albania to make the reforms and for us the European to accept the first Muslim countries in the Union. Nothing personal about Muslims, its just religion after all but it definitely forms another type of society with less freedom etc… I guess its not random that all of them are the most backward countries in the European territory.

    • SRB

      Mr Todorov,with this sentence i will close this conversation,im so sad when i see sentence from Bulgarians ,,we are sick nation,goverment,, or something like that,anyway,you need to read more,not to watch just television,and to hate everything from Serbia.I had also prejudices about Bulgarians,and i started to read more,i started to dance in bulgarian folkor,rchenica,and i got rid of my fears.In political wiew,we expected from Bulgaria to recognize Kosovo,because Bulgarian politics always was against Serbia(so sad,because i think that we need to be like brothers),but we didnt expect from FYR of Macedonia,but if you ask Macedonians,not Albanians,they NEVER want Kosovo like independent country.My country and my people from Kosovo lost homes,liberty,everything,because of propaganda which you believe,we had NATO bombing 80 days,,humanitarian bombing,,and lot of airplanes which bombing me and my country erupted from your country,you dont have to understand me and my people.Finally,i think EU is for everybody and for every country,greetings for good people,,nazdrave priateli,,!

    • SRB

      I will be brother with every person whom i want,i will never ask you for it,anyway,dont think that i hate ex YU countries,we had the most beautiful country in the world.Dont put all people in same pole,you cant say ohh macedonians,thay must be bad,because also in your nation,you can find BAD and GOOD persons.Please dont hate,because thats not good.For minority of Bulgarians,i didnt know that they dont have rights,they have a schools in bulgarian language,they can use bulgarian,to write bulgarian,and of course every minority need to be same like ,in this case like Serbs,but also,Turks and Gypses need to have rights in your country.You know,we live in Balkan,thats specific region,my favorite.

    • Feylep

      Mihail Todorov I have no idea why you show so much hate… You make assuptions and hate whole races based on very few facts, diplomatic relations and military.
      Like saying that greeks and cypriots are stealers- I have to say that this is the first time I hear this charactirization about us, and of course I say it false. What exactly has been stolen from you by Greeks?
      I could rant on about the behavior of Bulgarians in my country, but you see I regognise that sometimes you just come across the wrong people.
      I had no idea Bulgarians feel this way about FYROM… Here we have no idea how to call them actually as you can probably imagine :P I learned very recently about your relations with this country, and it is truly a shame- you should be like brothers,like us with Cyprus.
      Plus don’t be so hard on Serbia.. They have gone through a lot and been blamed exclusively, so that their bombing could be justified. Don’t think for a minute that Croatians,Bosnians and Albanians were Mother Teresas.. And generally the Serbians are genually nice people once you get to know them. We indeed are very close as countries, as SRB stated.
      Anyway, I hope I don’t show hate through this comment- we need to respect and love every nation. Only this way we’ll make each other stronger.
      Just don’t hate/love based on facts like these. Do you think your average Serbian/Greek/Albanian/Croatian/whatever wanted Bulgaria/FYROM relations to go this bad? They probably didn’t even have a say in it.
      Greetings!

  18. Patrick

    no one, in this momment.
    ps: kosovo is not an independent state, first it’s not a state, second it’s not independent, it lives with EU money.

    • Fatosi kos

      Republic of kosovo if you know how to read

    • Fisi

      Republic of Kosova is a recognised Country from 110 Countries. That is a huge reality. Peace

  19. Duirmuid Mac Sean

    I think that they should join. But we need to make the governance structures of the EU more transparent and understandable to the citizen.

  20. Nikol

    The EU should first settle the financial and political chaos in its internal affairs , and then open the doors to new tenants . Otherwise it makes no sense … In the present circumstances , the benefits that may accrue to a country from joining , in no case are compensated by the obligations and restrictions associated through this integration . In other words , the EU accession of a country limits the scope of its political and economic choices , without the corresponding benefit …… I wonder how the citizens of these countries do not see it ….. If they expect to find unity, togetherness and solidarity, they are dreaming in vain….This is just a big INC. and in a maladministration. But their opinion is never asked of course !!!!

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      I totally agree!

  21. Catalin Vasile

    Serbia should deal in a civilized way the problem of ethnic minorities, for it is harassing the Roumanians in Timoc and imposes them the name of Walachs claiming they have other identity! People are beaten, priests are opressed, babies get Serbian names…No to a fascist state!And they wonder why Albanians in Kosovo chose a different path! Island would be better off away from E.U.S.S.R.!

    • Z4

      Thats not truth,in Timok you can find Vlachs,not Walachs or some other ethnic minority.They have rights,but please you need to know Vlachs is not the same like Romanians,ok?What about hungarians in your country??what about rights for Hungarians??I believe that Hungarians from Romania will find different path like Albanians on Kosovo.

    • Srbija 2020!

      Serbia has not problem with ethnic minorities, specifically Roumanians in Timoc. Nationalist from Romania, ministry of education makes problems. They support Roumanians etnonationalist in Serbia.

    • Paul

      Romanians in Serbia are a constituent minority in Vojvodina, which is one of the most advanced minority solutions in the region. 27 minorities across Serbia enjoy a very diverse framework of rights in Balkan terms. Abolition of Hungarian autonomy in Romania speaks louder than words.

  22. Alba Longa

    Albania definitely. Kosovo and Serbia have unresolved border issues and so does Macedonia. Turkey is a whole other story and there is not enough political appetite for it. Albania on the other hand is homogeneous – no ethnic or religious divides, small enough market to be easily absorbed & very EU friendly.

    • Fabi

      I completely agree with you. Albania must be one of the next country to be suggested to enter in EU. But, they need a little bit more time, in order to show more stable policy from the part of government. My opinion is that the major part of the population are ready to do a step forward …

    • Riha

      Albania is ethnically homogeneous since it fines its minorities who wish to express their nationality freely. To this day, those who wish to change their Albanized names and lastnames imposed during communist era have to pay large ammounts to restore their own identity. Population Census in 2011 recorded 15% of those who did not wish to express any nationality, out of fear of being sanctioned. This happens in the 21st century Europe…

    • dvallance

      In the scheme of things it’s not that important it would actually be the smallest member state by population, I’m not sure that it would be fair for 300K people to have a veto in 485 million people that being said the other micro states haven’t used the veto to my knowledge (Malta and Luxembourg).

  23. Erol Šehu

    I disagree with most of the things you said. Firstly, if Serbia wants to become a new member state, it will have to recognize Kosovo as an independent state. That is de facto stated in the Brussels agreement. Secondly, it is in the interest of both Serbia and Kosovo to move forward in the EU membership, and also for Croatia. Especially for Bosnia and Herzegovina. You need to look at the Balkans as on a entangled puzzle, if one peace is missing, the puzzle is not complete. ;)

    • VUK

      I’m shocked by your comment. You need to visit a doctor; you have a temperature and one kind of sickness, and that is “nationalism”.

    • SRB

      luckily,nobody will ask you for your opinion.

  24. Kirsten Elvers

    Ukraine, definitely – and I am speaking for a whole network of young Europeans from both EU Member States and Non-Member States. The EU relations with the Ukraine offer substantial benefits to both sides: http://tinyurl.com/py4g8pd

  25. Dr. Adam Spencer

    I would welcome Iceland and Norway, and Scotland should a fresh application be required although I am not sure how current EU citizens can be excluded from the EU just because they exercise a democratic choice to be a seperate country. Other than that, no more. Focus on integration and a more federal structure rather than admit new members.

    • HT

      Haha, in the case Russia would join to Europe, or Europe would join to Russia :)

  26. Panos Mentesidis

    if the EU matures then it can accept new countries…Serbia needs to join! if we play our cards right, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania and Greece can create a mini union within the EU and put pressure on the Franco-Germans…Spain and Italy are not interested in forming a mini union with Greece so our only option is to try it out with our balkan neighbours. I dont care about Turkey and Iceland or Norway.

    • HT

      We (Hungary) also have a “mini union” with Poland, Slovakia, Czech Rep. called Visegrád. Maybe it would also benefitting for your countries as well.

  27. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    Dear Melina Pappa (on the top), so did EU with Crimea! So does Albania with Northern Kosovo. That what double tongue is about!

  28. Blaz Medo Caracola Trombito Bostjancic

    serbia is not ready yet. i am against any further enlargement untill new countries consolidate their inner affairs. we should not provoke norther xenofobia. serbs need to show they meet all standards. for serbia and montenegro a big no!

  29. Pedro Redondeiro

    And the EU still has a long geographic path to grow, but you already know that! I am very intersting to know till where the EU is going to extend, because right is obvious its ambitions towadrs eastern europe and eats asian countries, like israel, pelstine and so on! Oh and also the northern part of africa, like algeria for example! The EU is an empire on the rise, however in contrast with previous empires, it is a paceful and soft power empire, in the way that it has now the biggest soft power in the world, accompanied by a very strong economy! The EU is nowadays considered the 1st ever WORLD ECONOMIC SUPERPOWER, since the EU has made a name through peace keeping processes and through prosperity, not by force, and this is indeed nobel peace proze worthy, oh wait but it already won it, back in 2012! ;) Long live the EU and future USE (United States of Europe)!!!! :D Create the largest and the most peaceful and culturally rich econmic superpower empire in all the history of mankind, Yes we can do it! Act react impact, a new era begins and the sky is the limit!

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      “The EU is nowadays considered the 1st ever WORLD ECONOMIC SUPERPOWER”….
      Thanks a lot Pedro for it! You made my day!!!
      (a superpower without strong military capability is not a superpower; the Ukrainian crisis will show a lot on “EU-economic superpower”)

    • Pedro Pereira

      @George Yiannitsiotis, PhD
      Really that was all you took from what Pedro Redondeiro said? I’m with Pedro on this one, Europe could be an example of a superpower like the world as never seen before. There’s a lot to be done but the euro-sceptics aren’t helping at all at creating a more democratic and overall better Europe. People must realize that this dream takes time to build because there is 28 countrys that need to move together. We have to fight for the Europe we believe in not just saying “Oh, now we have a world crysis so I’m scared and we should just destroy the UE project because I’m more worried with my well being today than the world we could live in in a few years”. Remember money comes and goes, this project could last forever.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Pedro Redondeiro
      USE?

      How about E-FUC – European Federal Union of Countries?

      Much more apt methinks!

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      More democratic?
      How, when the EU/ECB/IMF gang violated the Constitutional order of the Hellenic Republic in order to rescue the German and French banks to the detriment of the peoples of Europe (not only the citizens of the Hellenic Republic that are considered debt-slaves by the EU elite.
      More secure?
      At least not offering such CREDIBLE guarantees for the Hellenic Republic. When “EU territory” came under foreign military occupation (Ymia rock-islands, Jan.30-31, 1996) the EU was totally absent, leaving the real master of the game (the USA) to de-escalate the crisis and return the islands to Greece.
      More welfare?
      The Troica regime imposed to us for the shake of the international usurers gang (IMF/ECB/4th Reich) resulted to the deterioration of social insurance, public health as well as salaries and employment.
      Europe is only in our dreams and in order to materialize our dreams we must get rid of the West European Usurers Corporation that threatens (to the benefit of the 4th Reich only) the very existence of a confederal or federal Union of EQUAL member-states.

  30. Vaggelis Dimo

    I believe that Albania should enter the EU because is a part of the continet. Many Albanias live around the countries like Greece, Austria, Italy etc. I hope the responsible authorities to take into acount the membership of Albania.

    • Feylep

      And so do Serbia, Bosnia, Ukraine, Fyrom, etc It’s not just the borders that matter so that a country will be a member…
      Personally I want Albania to be part, but only when it makes the living conditions of the people there better

  31. zix

    I dont think Kosovo will happen, but this should be on table.

  32. Borislav Valkov

    Macedonia has historical problems with Bulgaria. Mainly there are historical events and historical people whose origin is under unresolved dispute. Also they have some interest in acqusition of bulgarian soveren lands(which I believe is NON legal because we have a peace treaty after the WWII which is recognizing our current borders). That is why EU shoud monitor our neighborhood(and resolve any problems) when we speak about EU integration.

    • Mark

      I would rather say Bulgaria has got a problem with itself and its nationalism. How can a nation of 2 million people be a threat to anyone and demand anything from a country that is at least 3 times bigger and politically incomparably stronger? Nonsense.

  33. Jovan Ivosevic

    Sadly, I think many of the comment here answered this question filtered through their national prejudices rather than what is really going on with he accession process. Personally, I think had the German SPD formed a red-red-green government, Serbia would have had a very smooth sailing through the integration process, but since they still left Merkel in charge, it will be thornier and slower but it will happen for one simple reason.

    First and foremost, add whatever is left of Ex-Yugoslavia that isn’t in the EU and it’s not even a third of Ukraine in terms of population, plus its people are wealthier (Serbia and Montenegro arre both higher than Bulgaria in terms of purchasing power according and Montenegro slightly above while Serbia slightly below Romania) So in terms of expense, it will not be that consequential. Second, and this is most important, the one thing Europeans don’t want to do is supervise another Balkan war and accept a flood of refugees. With Croatia and Slovenia in, and the Muslims in Bosnia having intensified recently to seek a revision of the Bosnian constitution to become a centralist state, Serbia is seen as key to prevent the Bosnian Serbs from declaring independence and seek a solution within the confines of Bosnia’s territorial integrity. Serbia has absolutely no incentive to do that at all because it is unpopular…. unless of course EU membership is the prize at the end of that line.

    Montenegro is proceeding smoothly, its only problem being that the government is very corrupt even by Balkan standards and the country has been flooded with Russian mob money. The EU will only green light them when they see that Milo Djukanovic is beginning to loosen his grip on this mafia style rule, which seems to be occurring, although not due to an attack from his Pro-Serbian opposition (although that has had an effect) but discord within the ranks of his own so called “pro-sovereign” bloc which supported independence from Serbia. Of late, two political parties have formed which compete for that bloc of voters and which are eating away at the ruling party’s support

    Kosovo is NOT going to be an issue anymore. Like or hate the Germans, one thing you can count on is when they give their word, they will keep it. Berlin asked us to sign a “normalization” treaty with the Kosovo government so we can figure out and discuss day to day issues but stops short of internationally recognizing Kosovo and in exchange for doing that, we could continue negotiating for EU accession. Serbia signed this treaty, the government that negotiated this treaty just went to early election and the governing parties got a 2/3 majority in Parliament (meaning no negative fallout from it) while the last party in Parliament which was against EU membership came in below 5% and under its electoral law was awarded no seats. As I said, the CDU is going to agree to let Serbia in because without it, they know we will turn to Russia, sign the CSTO which will bring Russian troops in the Balkans and turn this into a much more uncomfortable situation. So letting Serbia into the EU is a cheaper way to solve that problem. The SPD would do the same only faster and more enthusiastically. And Moscow is all in favor of this arrangement because outside the EU, Serbia is another friendly state that will need to be propped up because it would be isolated from its neighbors economically. Inside the EU, Serbia is a country that like all others will wield a national veto on foreign policy decisions. Russia would love nothing more than to have an ambassador on the Council who could represent is position the way Serbia would.

    • George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

      Like or hate the Germans, one thing you can count on is when they give their word, they will keep it.
      Don’t be sure Jovan! You forgot the key player in the region (the USA).-

  34. Marcel

    I’d be in favor of removing any country east of the old ‘Iron Curtain’.

    Do these people seriously think we’re gonna let all of them sponge off our money?

    And ideally, those bordering the Mediterranean should also be out.

  35. Stoyan Stoyanov

    Serbia has a long way before even getting close to EU. It has issues with its ethnic minorities, issues with Kosovo, but the biggest one is the economy. Serbia has almost one third of its labor force working in public sector. 60% of the government sendings goes to pensions and social payments. Unemployment is almost 20 %, budget deficit is about 8% and it’s getting worse each year. GDP per capita is 30% lower even than the poorest EU members Romania and Bulgaria.

    • Mark

      Kosovo and minority rights might play a significant role in the process but an economic shape has never really been a fundamental precondition (Romania, Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania, Croatia, Hungary… as well as Ireland, Portugal or Greece in 1970s and 1980s). By 2020 or 2024 Serbia will have become the member and transform its state and society entirely.

      The bad news is I assume not too many people (from England to Hungary or from Italy to Serbia) live / care about the so-called “European values” (peace, stability, solidarity…). For them the EU might only be an instrument for retaliation and reimbursement for their collective historical frustrations.

  36. Hrvoje

    For my opinion I think that Montenegro will be 1st next country who will enjoy in EU, and that will be around 2021 – 2022. Then probably together Macedonia, Serbia, and maybe Albania around 2027 – 2028. Bosnia, and Kosovo, same as Moldova and Ukraine probably won’t be member, if they ever been candidate, of EU earlier then 2030 – 2035. Turkey, won’t be part of EU, same as Belarus, Russia, and Caucasian countries.

  37. Jovan Ivosevic

    Stoyan, Serbia’s purchasing power is above that of Bulgaria. Don’t believe me, check out the study I linked below towards the bottom of the page. I agree Serbia has reforms to undertake, but it is merely a matter of implementing the Acquis, as the question of Kosovo and handing over people accused of war crimes has been successfully resolved. I expect membership to be offered in the second half of Germany’s next government, so sometime between 2019 and 2021. http://www.gfk.com/news-and-events/press-room/press-releases/Pages/purchasing-power-europe-2013-14.aspx

    • Stanislav Malchev

      Serbian economy it’s just not o.k. This study has nothing to the reality. The GDP per capita, in euro, can’t be taken just from by currency… I don’t have anything against Serbia personally. Check the unemployment rate and the real economical growth. It’s in minus and it keeps going down. Check the graphic.

    • SRB

      But Stanislav,i cant understood that you talking about Serbia from Bulgarian wiew,from wiew of one country with completly same economic problems.Firstly your country has big peoblem with economy like my country,and you dont have credibility to say,oohh Serbia is not prepared jet,if you ask some German,or some British,they still thinking that Bulgaria joined so early to EU,i think that EU is for everybody.

  38. Kris Babůrek

    Would Germany be ready if boys from thirties and early forties were again in power in 1960s?

  39. Vesselin Alexiev

    I think before we start talking about bringing more countries in the EU, the Union has to focus on bringing equality to the economic conditions to the table. The former Eastern Block countries which got accepted into the EU, still have a lot to catch up on economically, before we can think about expanding.

  40. Vesselin Alexiev

    Nonetheless, I think the EU should work to form closer relations with FYROM, Serbia and the Western Balkans, along with Turkey in order to prepare them for entering the EU in the near future.

  41. catherine benning

    After reading through this lot I understand why so many Brits want out of this union. They will suck us dry if we go on with this. All those that want to join this club are states wanting to eat off our plate, not offer any support to the union. Why have we got such a low opinion of ourselves that our leaders feel only those who are needy will want to join? Sounds like a girl with low esteem who can’t see herself as worth an aristocratic title. I suppose if they think we look like Baronesses that flaunt their faces with a grin, I can see their point.

    I go along with Vesselin Alexiev, once all the union states in the union now are on a financial par, then expansion is a proposition. Presently we are not able to admit any more, unless they can come to the table with equal standards across the board of the big three who pay most to keep this show on the road.

    Why does the EU not make it a prerequisite that any state must be financially up to the standard of the northern sector before than can apply?

    • Paul X

      I totally agree with you Catherine

      There was a topic on here a while ago about Albania joining the EU. I had the cheek to ask the simple question of just how allowing Albania to join would benefit me personally as a EU taxpayer

      The reply……
      “Minister Bushati argued that Albanian membership would bring stability and prosperity to Europe, as well as greater credibility for the EU in the interntational arena”

      Have you ever heard such a crock of sh!te?

      Stability and prosperity? I don’t see Albania bring much to the EU table, for prosperity I would read dependance, and as for “credibility” just who is bothered what the international arena thinks of the EU?…. except the EU political elite who want to play big boys on the world stage that is

      These “ministers” really need to come down and visit planet earth occasionally

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      1. The EU had such prerequisites in the 1970s. However, they understood that should they had rest on them, they wouldn’t have expanded the “european economic community” (namely, european market). Therefore, they changed course and admitted Greece (1981), Portugal and Spain (1986) as well as Austria and Finland (1995) the latter in breach of their cold war neutrality.
      2. The problem was raised when the EU (in particular, Germany) pushed hard for the admittance of countries like Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary and its former WW II allies in the Balkans (Slovenia, Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria). In strict economic terms, only the Republic of Cyprus and Malta met the criteria of the 1970s.
      In order to proceed with its hidden neo-nazionalist agenda, the 4th Reich, accepted the manipulation of Greek economic data (“Greek statistics”) in the EMU process, realising that should Greece had not joined the Eurozone, the Balkans (with the exception of Slovenia only) would have remained a USD zone. Greece’s participation in the EMU was the key to German infiltration in the Balkans along with the dissolution of Yugoslavia that offered to the USA military presence northern of Greece for the first time in history.
      Now, Germany faces what we call in Strategic Studies its culminating point of success: it overstressed its political-economic influence to spheres beyond endurance (Ukraine, Eastern Mediterranean, the Balkans), risking to lose every gain under the coverage of the so-called “European Union”. The USA fires back engaging to a low-cost for themselves, bra-de-fers with Russia over Ukraine that will stage a kind of “cold war” affecting primarily Germany and the eurozone; Germany won’t be able to avert the dissolution of the eurozone as soon as the USA decides to regain monetary control over the Balkans (Greece still remains the key as well as the weaker ring of the euro-chain) and France, the UK, Italy and the Iberian peninsula may shift to a more “atlantic” (namely, pro-US) than “European” (namely, yielding to the German-led emerging empire) path. Too many water-mellons under one’s armpit! The German economic-political elite must think of it!

  42. Trond Johannessen

    Erdogan with his recent censorship play has clearly established my point that Turkey is incompatible with Europe. We need internal cohesion in a Union that is already suffering under increasing polarization, and Turkey is an Islamic state. The cultural gap is total.

    We do not need to expand, the EU, but to build and deliver on mutual promises. Federation-building is not an imperialist game on the net, but hard work. We have gotten a lot of things right, but too many pieces are not in place. If we cannot get a fiscal union in place, we will have failed. Our efforts need to focus on building Citizen confidence in the Union and certainly in the common currency. This is not a propaganda exercise, but must be executed through deliverables. Jobs, tax alignments, and also some further work to share risks and burdens.

    • Faruk sayokanoglu

      Actually you like erdoğan because he gives you greedy europeans that reason to ged rid off Turkey, We are waiting in front fo EU for 20 years, and before ERdoğan, you were always have an excuses about our membership. Even we resolved the problem about cyprus, about armenian issue, even we let kurdistan established you wont let us to enter, just be honest. You mighty Europeans warns Turkey every chance you had about “human rights” “media cencorship” etc. But 5 may 2014, you lifted visas for United Arab Emirates, which is practice sharia law.

      is UAE aggree with your democracy standarts? Or your mighty union is just sinking ship so to boost your economy, you are crawling to get some help. İ bet EU put stoning for adultery to it’s law if saudi sheikhs gives you billions of oil money, you hypocrists.

    • Alexander G

      @Faruk Sayokanoglu
      You resolved the Cyprus problem?How did that came to pass. Have been the turkish troops removed and the properties returned to the rightful owners?

  43. David Fuzzey

    Why would Iceland join??..lol.. They were smart enough to stop talks….Hope we leave too , the sooner the better.

  44. Nikos

    I believe Serbia should be the next EU member-state.

  45. João Frazão

    I really find quite funny how EU leaders (aka Merkel) are always shouting to «keep your domestics in order» to the PIGS, whilst Europe, as a whole, doesn’t seem to really absorb the quintessential lesson of this dogma: keep your house in order. Currently, this exactly year, only 10 countries contributed to the European pocket money, with Poland gaining the total part of Germany’s contribution (and we all know it’s, by far, the biggest). I really suggest that firstly, we should solve the structural problems inherent to the UE, with a dramatic fraction with North South economic incomes. For now, we should concentrate on expand our economy, answer to the Spanish and Italian crises, which could be lethal to the union given the fact that they are the 2nd and 3rd biggest economies within the continent. The whole monetary union is made to collapse if it keeps like currently is (without fiscal unions and etc.). The only country we should be willing to accept would be Iceland, Scotland if they get rid of London, Norway (which would be Brussels dream, obviously) and, perhaps if possible, Greenland (I don’t really know if they can count as a candidate but it is meant to grow the next decades).
    Excluding this set, we could invest (in Balkans, surely) but keep a healthy distance while not managing our domestic’s order. If this irradiation of soft power and the emergence of UE as a global superpower are Brussels purposes, then we should also keep an eye and be open to idea of maybe a future Turkey and Ukraine getting in, although they need to solve firstly all those human rights issues and Copenhagen criteria standards (and, please, with nice ties to Moscow). Now, for the moment, let’s enjoy what the EU represented, an opportunity for growth, and the whole discussion over Kosovo, Serbia and all that Balkan puzzle should be pursued in a time where Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary and the wide list of East brothers, specially Warsaw. Until then, let’s try to keep everyone in the house so this doesn’t mess any more than already is. The whole franco­german axis should now be ready to give some further actions to UE whilst trying to keep economic pace within global order.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @João Frazão
      WRONG!!

      In continental Europe Italy has the 3rd biggest economy and Spain the 4th biggest economy.

    • Mark

      Wasn’t Greenland actually the first one to leave the EU (then EEC) in 1985? Had Greenland been able to, it would have left in 1970s. Have you heard about it? Norway and Iceland? Yeah, right and the moon is made of cheese.

  46. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    A UE não precisa de novos estados a UE precisa de paz sustentável e estabilidade politica na União Europeia

  47. Άρης

    I believe that the first member of the E.U. should be Serbia. Serbia has an emerging market economy in upper-middle income range. According to the International Monetary Fund, Serbia’s exports recorded a steady growth in last couple of years reaching $14.6 billion in 2013. In addition, since 2000, Serbia has attracted over $25 billion in foreign direct investment. Blue-chip corporations making investments in Serbia include: FIAT, Siemens, Bosch, Philip Morris, Michelin, Coca-Cola, Carlsberg and others. In the financial aspect, Serbia is a good choice.

    • Mark

      It’s not the question about who “should be” but rather who “is going to be”. Economy is not the crucial part – but political development, civil society and the compliance with the acquis.

  48. catherine benning

    @ Viking:

    Scandinavia does not love the British people. What they love is being in tight with the USA corporate insurance companies and others which run both the UK and Scandinavia. In the UK they are known under the name of Reform Group. Which in turn is funded by UNUM a US based private insurance company specialising in disability. So they tell us. This ‘Reform Group’ is the consultation think tank that decides on UK political policy.

    So, you are incorrect in your assumption that the connection between us and the Northern States is because we are blood brothers. And by the way, the French words we have all adopted are in fact, based in Latin and Greek.So not French in the true sense of it.

    And as a PS, it was ‘William the Conqueror’ not the ‘conquered.’ That would be an oxymoron if it was as you wrote. And by the way I’m a fully fledged descendant of Vikings, Germans and French.

    However, Scotland will vote for independence. If it wants self determination that is. It would have to as there population has not voted for a Conservative government for ions. They therefore have totally rejected being ruled by the right wing US infiltrated government we presently have in the UK. Although how that sits with Scotland asking for EU status I don’t know. As it has become more clear by the day, through the mess in the Crimea proving that European politicians have also been recruited into the strange world of American poodle policy.

    When it comes down to it, Russia has done us all a great favour by exploding the myth of European self regulation and policy. Which means the only vote I will make is to a far left wing organisation that rejects all right wing US politics completely. Which doesn’t sit well with me either, because they are so pro European indigenous suicide by their unfathomable stance on rampant immigration and promotion of gay marriage and adoption.

  49. Paul X

    @Zeus

    Yes Albania is a poor country and I have sympathy for those who live there, but giving sympathy and my hard earned money are two different things

    You consider the question “nasty” but I say it is a perfectly reasonable question for people who’s taxes contribute to the EU budget to ask ….

    What is in it for us allowing poorer countries to join?

    The usual party line is that it “opens up the market for exports to that country” well excuse me if I sound cynical but I do not see increased exports of Land Rovers and Jaguars to Albania just because they are allowed to join the EU

    Basically the Euro-elite have expansionist ambitions and they are luring in the poorer countries with promises of handouts and subsidies….paid for by my taxes…so I’m entitled to raise questions like this

    • Mark

      If there were no subsidies, handouts or development funds, Albania would still join the EU. It’s not all about money. But I agree that elites have there own calculations and that such things have got nothing to do with the so-called “European (post WWII) project” and “common values”.

    • Adrian Uka

      Well I don`t know where you are getting the ideas of poor Albania. That would be true in 2005-2006 but Albania since than have changed alot! They have much better economy than, Montenegro, Serbia, Macedonia, Kosovo and even italians are going to Albania to find a job those last years.
      I can see that many are saying that Norway should join EU, but NO thanks we have said NO to EU twice, and we are not going to change that at least not for now.

      But, yes i was in Albania where the norwegian “Statkraft” are investing around 500 million euros and that state is changing very much, they should join the EU if they want too.

  50. Lupco

    Having accepted every concession request by the EU , BARR the changing of its CONSTITUTIONAL NAME , the REPUBLIC of MACEDONIA should NOW be UNCONDITIONALLY accepted post haste , as it has bent over backwards , created a multicultural PARLIAMENT ( not just community ) but a PISS POOR enforcement whereby i am SURE the GREEKS WILL NOT ACCEPT the OHRID PREAMBLE as neither would FRANCE accept that should a municipality have greater than 20% ethnic minority they get rights above & beyond the logical &acceptable to the indigenous majority

  51. Vladi

    никой не трябва да се присъедини за сега. Турция не трябва да влиза в ЕС, Македония също.

    nobody should join now. Turkey should join the EU, Macedonia also

  52. Jos van Dijk

    Iceland and Norway if they want, and Switzerland. These countries have already many relations with the EU. It’s not good that they stay outside and have nothing to say about the future of Europe.

    • Mark

      So funny. Do you really think they would agree with you? Or should we force them into something they strongly dislike and duck out of as it was a pest or disease?

  53. Daltese

    I would be happy to see #Serbia join the Union.

  54. Paul X

    And exactly how many of the potential new countries will be net contributors to the EU budget?….by my estimate…absolutely none of them

    People can procrastinate all they want about the benefits of particular countries joining the EU but at the end of the day everything boils down to hard cash

    The EU as an organisation adds no value to this world apart from justifying its own existence, it takes money from “richer nations”, skims off enough to keep itself in fat salaries and business lunches and then hands out whats left in subsidies and for projects in the less well off countries.

    ..and the big problem is there are no more “richer nations” queuing up to join so the EU is continually trying to screw more out of the current net contributors, and as a full rate UK taxpayer that means more of my money down the EU drain

    • Mark

      I agree. The EU is useful (and makes sense) to Brussels’ bureaucrats primarily. Though, we shouldn’t underestimate the stability and positive transformation that it gives to countries such as ex-GDR, Poland, Slovenia, Estonia, Slovakia, Croatia…We shouldn’t forget about the benefits Germany enjoys from the enlarged EU (and not just Germany). The UK stays out of the monetary union, the Schengen Agreement, receives the UK rebate etc. and soon might be out of the game entirely. So there is not much reason to worry.

  55. Marc F

    None until social and tax regulation are made homogeneous in current Europe. We cannot have an “economic only” view of Europe.
    Some pragmatic aspects also need to be solved for citizens. As an example you cannot pay for a train ticket with another country credit card at automatic machines in Netherlands.

    • Paul X

      It all boils down to economics

      Following the example you give, all the EU will do is draft up some directive to make commonality between ticket buying machines throughout Europe.

      It will fall on the member countries to foot the bill for actually carrying out whatever is required, the fact many countries will have more important national issues to fund will not bother the EU…………. and to add insult to injury it would probably fine any member country that fails to comply with its directive within a given timescale

      Essentially, the EU likes nothing better than spending other peoples money…….

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Paul X
      I agree with your ticketing machine example.

      The only thing I would add is that whatever ‘standard’ is chosen by the EU for said ticketing machines, rest assured some big business will have secretly ‘influenced’ proceedings. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink.

  56. Together-We-Stand

    1-Scotland
    2-Iceland
    3-Montenegro

  57. goesbyanyothername

    Iceland, the rest of the Balkans, Turkey (if they meet the criteria that is) and Georgia :)

  58. ironworker

    From a strategic/military/economic point my bet is on Moldova and maybe Georgia (not so sure though), but I also don’t want to cut in line and put Serbia next. Moldova and Georgia are adjacent to gas/oil pipelines, Serbia in the other hand, has almost everything what it takes to become a full EU member. Both add-ons are a gain for Europe as a whole.

  59. Giuseppe

    Next countries to join should be Serbia and Montenegro together. The are by far the most advanced countries in the bid for the EU. It is not for now however, it should take at least 5-6 years before the close their chapter.
    I do not think Kosovo should be an issue. The EU cannot impose recognition as a condition for accession since 5 EU member still do not recognize it! So it makes no sense for now. As for Serbia (but also for Montenegro) I would be more worried about the return of some kind of soft authoritarian power after new elections.

  60. Limbidis Arian

    Here’s a neat idea, how about we drop all this anti-russian disenssion and…invite RUSSIA into the EU.
    From the Atlantic to the Pacific…NOW THAT would be one hell of an union.
    And we wouldn’t have to worry about “evul russians”. We wouldn’t need to bow to Washington either anymore.

    I am serious.
    Russia, Ukraine next on the joining list plz.

  61. Max

    No state/country should join the EU in the coming periods, in past months it has been proven that EU states, such as Greece and Spain, can be a big danger to the overall stability of Europe. The EU as it is now has enough issues that it needs to solve, more countries in the EU would only add up to more issues for all the states.

    If a state had to be chosen to join the EU, I would say Russia and Ukraine if they are in a union together it would cause less problems for both. It will make it easier for the EU to talk with Russia, it would also possibly help the relation between Russia and the USA because a lot of members in the EU are also in the NATO.

  62. Together-We-Stand

    I agree. And i also agree with your earlier comment that Turkey must never be allowed. Having an Asian country inside the EU, what a (distasteful) joke!

  63. Taiwo

    Or which country should be kicked out of the EU instead?……..It should be Bulgaria who has refused to grow up!!!

    • Limbidis Arian

      Define “grow-up”, buddy <.<

  64. Taiwo

    Non from the Balkans because of Bulgaria who remained the only baby in the EU!!!

    • Limbidis Arian

      I am romanian and you should shut your mouth about Bulgaria, buddy.
      This is like the 3rd comment against them, what the hell !

  65. George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

    What may be lost for Moldova/Rumania is the Trans-Dniester region. Russia won’t accept another Latvia-Estonia case regarding the Russians living there. Besides, Russia has learned a tough lesson from the Afgan war (1979-89): no army can hold land without public support. The Russian political-military elite is very cautious even regarding a direct invasion not of Ukraine proper (where nationalists prevail) but of eastern Ukraine where pro-Russians constitute a majority trend.

  66. George Yiannitsiotis, PhD

    The citizens of Switzerland, Norway and epsecially Iceland are smart enough to keep clear of the German-led West European Usurers Corporation. The Balkans are more naive and may fall in the trap like the Greeks (first in Zallogo dance), the Slovenians, the Romanians and Bulgarians and now the Serbs and Albanians.

  67. Tarquin Farquhar

    @Catherine Benning
    Some interesting points particularly regarding UNUM and the contribution of French words to the English language.

    The French language and indeed France per se is a derivative culture founded by the greatest European nation of all time viz. Italy.

    Britain on the other hand is an acquisitive culture reflected NOT just in its vocabulary (containing words originating from Old English, Norse, French, Roman, German/Saxon as well as Indian, African, Chinese etc etc) but in its food, its music and its genes.

    PS: It is evident you are NOT familiar with the term ‘oxymoron’ – a tad moronic on your part methinks. :)

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      Obviously, you are unaware of the fact that root language and alphabet to all “European languages” is the Greek followed by the Latin. Xenophon Zolotas, Governor of the Bank of Greece, addressed the General Assemply of the International Bank for Reconstruction & Development (now World Bank) in 1957 and 1959 using only Greek words. Here is the Sept 26, 1957 speech:
      “I always wished to address this Assembly in Greek, but realized that it would have been indeed “Greek” to all present in this room. I found out, however, that I could make my address in Greek which would still be English to everybody. With your permission, Mr. Chairman, l shall do it now, using with the exception of articles and prepositions, only Greek words.

      “Kyrie, I eulogize the archons of the Panethnic Numismatic Thesaurus and the Ecumenical Trapeza for the orthodoxy of their axioms, methods and policies, although there is an episode of cacophony of the Trapeza with Hellas. With enthusiasm we dialogue and synagonize at the synods of our didymous organizations in which polymorphous economic ideas and dogmas are analyzed and synthesized. Our critical problems such as the numismatic plethora generate some agony and melancholy. This phenomenon is characteristic of our epoch. But, to my thesis, we have the dynamism to program therapeutic practices as a prophylaxis from chaos and catastrophe. In parallel, a Panethnic unhypocritical economic synergy and harmonization in a democratic climate is basic. I apologize for my eccentric monologue. I emphasize my euharistia to you, Kyrie to the eugenic arid generous American Ethnos and to the organizes and protagonists of his Amphictyony and the gastronomic symposia”.

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      And the Oct. 2, 1959 speech:
      Kyrie, it is Zeus’ anathema on our epoch (for the dynamism of our economies) and the heresy of our economic method and policies that we should agonize the Skylla of nomismatic plethora and the Charybdis of economic anaemia. It is not my idiosyncracy to be ironic or sarcastic but my diagnosis would be that politicians are rather cryptoplethorists. Although they emphatically stigmatize nomismatic plethora, they energize it through their tactics and practices. Our policies should be based more on economic and less on political criteria. Our gnomon has to be a metron between economic,strategic and philanthropic scopes. Political magic has always been anti-economic. In an epoch characterized by monopolies, oligopolies, monopolistic antagonism and polymorphous inelasticities, our policies have to be more orthological, but this should not be metamorphosed into plethorophobia, which is endemic among academic economists. Nomismatic symmetry should not antagonize economic acme. A greater harmonization between the practices of the economic and nomismatic archons is basic. Parallel to this,we have to synchronize and harmonize more and more our economic and nomismatic policies panethnically. These scopes are more practicable now, when the prognostics of the political and economic barometer are halcyonic. The history of our didimus organization on this sphere has been didactic and their gnostic practices will always be a tonic to the polyonymous and idiomorphous ethnical economies. The genesis of the programmed organization will dynamize these policies. Therefore, i sympathize, although not without criticism one or two themes with the apostles and the hierarchy of our organs in their zeal to program orthodox economic and nomismatic policies, although I have some logomachy with them.I apologize for having tyranized you with my Hellenic phraseology. In my epilogue, i emphasize my eulogy to the philoxenous aytochtons of this cosmopolitan metropolis and my encomium to you, Kyrie stenographers.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @George Yiannitsiotis
      I concur that the Greek language had a significant influence on the English language – please refer to my “etc etc” text BTW.

      FYI, Sanskrit had a significant influence on the Greek language.

      As regards your speech – very clever BUT ALL the words you cited were in English albeit a high number of said English words had Greek origins.

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      @Tarquin Farquhar:
      1.The tree of European languages starts from Greek and its daughter Latin
      The Hellenic (Greek) language can be seen as a bridge to sanskrit and Indian peninsula languages (the family of the Sanskrit-origin languages incorporates Caucasian languages, also).
      Back to the tree of European Languages:
      from ancient Greek-> modern Greek
      from Latin -> Italian
      Latin+Greek (with Latin alphabet)-> Romanian
      Greek+Latin+Gothic-> French and German
      French+Latin+Greek+Arabic->Spanish and Portuguese
      Then another round of byproduct languages:
      French and German -> English
      English+German->flemish (Dutch)
      Then we do have the Slavian group that originates from Russian, based on the Cyrilic alphabet (a combination of Greek and Latin alphabets by ΚΥΡΙΛΟΣ – Kyrilos / Cyril – a Greek monk that translated the Bible to Bulgarian):
      Serbocratian, Bulgarian, Polish, Czec, Slovakian etc. belong to this group. However, due to political divisions, the Serbocroatian was split due to the fact that the Croats under the Austrian empire used the Latin alphabet for their language instead of the Cyrilic used by the Serbs (under the Ottoman rule);
      Then, we have a specific group of Mongolian languages (Hungarian, Finnish and Turkish) that do not connect to the Greek-Latin tree as well as the nordic group (Danish, Sweedish, Norwegian) and the Celtic group (Wales, Basque country) that has some in common with Greek.
      Following the tree above, the Greeks who know well ancient Greek and Latin, can easily learn French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian as well as German (the Grammar is copy-paste of the Ancient Greek!) and then, easily English (piece of cake!), afterwards Dutch (though problematic in verbal).

      2. The two speeches delivered by famous economist and then Bank of Greece Director I sited above, can be easily read and understood by a Greek who simply knows the Latin alphabet, without knowing English since all the words except articles and junctions are GREEK. Let’s start:
      Kyrie = ΚΥΡΙΕ (Lord, Master)
      Zeus = ΖΕΥΣ (the first and arch-God of Ancient Greek Mythology)
      anathema = ΑΝΑΘΕΜΑ (curse)
      epoch = ΕΠΟΧΗ (era, season) etc
      due to the fact that the transliteration of the Greek words in latin -french-english was done following certain rules as follows:
      Θ -> th (ΘΕΑΤΡΟ – theater)
      X – ch
      Φ -> ph (only the Spanish kept the latin phonetic equivalent letter F)
      Ξ -> x (ΞΕΝΟΦΩΝ -> Xenophon Zolotas)
      Κ -> c (thus, for instance, ΜΑΚΕΔΟΝΙΑ became Macedonia but not in the Cyrilic where it kept the k for the Greek Κappa)
      Β -> V (like the island of ancient Greek poet ΣΑΠΦΩ -> Sappho, ΛΕΣΒΟΣ -> Lesvos; from its false transliteration, the homosexual women are called lesbians, though the inhabitants of Lesvos, Lesvians)
      Ρ-> R ΡΥΘΜΟΣ rhythm
      Π -> Ρ (ΠΟΛΙTIKH -> Politics)
      ΜΠ -> b (however, the Greek word ΒΑΡΒΑΡΟΣ – Varvaros became barbarus, barbaric etc.)
      EY, AY -> eu, au
      Y -> y or u (ΤΥΠΩΝΩ – type) KYKΛΟΣ -> Cycle
      Η -> e (ΗΛΕΚΤΡON -> electron, ΗΛΕΚΤΡΑ -> Electra etc)
      ΟΙ -> e (thus ΟΙΚΟΝΟΜΙΑ became economy and ΟΙΚΟΛΟΓΙΑ -> ecology)
      Λ -> L
      Γ -> G (ΛΟΓΟΣ -> Logo)
      et.al. (numerus)
      (R.I.P. ΓΕΩΡΓΙΟΣ ΑΘ. ΓΙΑΝΝΙΤΣΙΩΤΗΣ, Linguistics Teacher, 1873-1950)

  68. George Yiannitsiotis

    And the Oct. 2, 1959 speech:
    “Kyrie, it is Zeus’ anathema on our epoch (for the dynamism of our economies) and the heresy of our economic method and policies that we should agonize the Skylla of nomismatic plethora and the Charybdis of economic anaemia. It is not my idiosyncracy to be ironic or sarcastic but my diagnosis would be that politicians are rather cryptoplethorists. Although they emphatically stigmatize nomismatic plethora, they energize it through their tactics and practices. Our policies should be based more on economic and less on political criteria. Our gnomon has to be a metron between economic,strategic and philanthropic scopes. Political magic has always been anti-economic. In an epoch characterized by monopolies, oligopolies, monopolistic antagonism and polymorphous inelasticities, our policies have to be more orthological, but this should not be metamorphosed into plethorophobia, which is endemic among academic economists. Nomismatic symmetry should not antagonize economic acme. A greater harmonization between the practices of the economic and nomismatic archons is basic. Parallel to this,we have to synchronize and harmonize more and more our economic and nomismatic policies panethnically. These scopes are more practicable now, when the prognostics of the political and economic barometer are halcyonic. The history of our didimus organization on this sphere has been didactic and their gnostic practices will always be a tonic to the polyonymous and idiomorphous ethnical economies. The genesis of the programmed organization will dynamize these policies. Therefore, i sympathize, although not without criticism one or two themes with the apostles and the hierarchy of our organs in their zeal to program orthodox economic and nomismatic policies, although I have some logomachy with them.I apologize for having tyranized you with my Hellenic phraseology. In my epilogue, i emphasize my eulogy to the philoxenous aytochtons of this cosmopolitan metropolis and my encomium to you, Kyrie stenographers.”

    Only the articles and junctions are english – the rest is GREEK!!!

  69. Random

    thanks, but no thank you. we norwegians doesn’t want to. :)

  70. George Yiannitsiotis

    Imvros and Tenedos as well as Eastern Thrace were handed over to Turkey via the Lausanne Treaty (1923). Therefore, there isn’t such issue on the table. The real issue is the fact that Turkey refuses to abide by the provisions of the International Law of the Sea regarding the territorial waters and continental self of neighbouring Greece threatening to launch war against Greece should the latter extend its territorial waters from 6 to 12 nautic miles and its airspace from 10 to 12 n.m. However, though this casus belli is still strategic option for the Turkish political-military establishment, the “European Union” holds talks with them!!! Do you understand now why the citizens of the Hellenic Republic are sceptical regarding EU (namely German) “foreign policy” on the Ukrainian question?

  71. Rui

    I am not norwegian, but I think Norway is great like it is. Personally, I don’t think that EU must have a new country in it. Our economical situation doesn’t have to pull other countries to help fighting the problem. I am from Portugal and I don’t like the way Europe is helping us, in spite of knowing that we hadn’t another method to solve it – for me, it’s shameful.

  72. dvallance

    We have to be careful expanding too quickly as it could destroy the EU. The eastern additions of 2004 have managed to dilute low paid job markets. We should probably have a threshold of 85% per capita wealth for full membership of the EU average to prevent future distortions. That being said Norway, Iceland and Switzerland are manageable but seem unlikely to join anytime soon especially Norway and Switzerland. The country I definitely don’t want to join is turkey, so many reasons 1) It’s growing more corrupt each day
    2) It’s too large 77 million people would be the second largest member after Germany (would upset balance of power suddenly)
    3) It not really in Europe 99% of turkey is in Asia (we might as well call it a Eurasian Union)
    4) It would increase the EU border size and move that border next to the war torn countries of Iraq and Syria and border Iran.
    5) It currently occupies half of a member state Cyprus (which is in Asia aswell)

  73. ironworker

    They don’t recognise Kosovo because there is only one and a half elephant in the room. Finland might be too busy ignoring it, I’m talking about Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina, however CY, GR, RO, SK and ES might support Congo’s Katanga secessionist faction in equal measure as Finland does to Kosovo.

    • ironworker

      Now, Justice has been done because you say so. Hallelujah ! What’s next ?

    • Carl

      Serbia or Montenegro should be next to join, eventually the enire Western Balkans should join. The question is what will happen with Kosovo given that it’s not even recognised as a state by five EU-members .

  74. George Yiannitsiotis

    Are you ready to accept secession of Northern Epirus (Αγιοι Σαράντα, Αργυρόκαστρο etc.) in order to become part of the Hellenic territory? Do not forget, that according to the Corfu Protocol (1914) Northern Epirus has the status of autonomous area within Albania, heavily populated by an internationally recognized Greek majority (minority in Albania proper).

    The question of change regarding territorial status quo ante in the Balkans was not posing real threats to international stability insofar as it was contained within the external borders of Yugoslavia. Should one opens the Aeolos flask of border redrawal in the Balkans, he must be ready for a new war that is not considered a proper way of international behavior (at least regarding the “European Union”). Therefore, should a state outside the EU, knock the door to enter the Union, it must abide by certain rules above all “respect of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all member-states” (this apply to all non-EU applicants, including Turkey).

  75. Modis

    EU should offer Ukraine a membership straight away after the agreement is signed after the president is elected on the 25 of May .

  76. George Yiannitsiotis

    Obviously, you are not a polite person. A have nothing to say more since you are unable to understand the critical point of my argument: I do not raise questions of territorial change between Greece and Albania; I used the case of Northern Epirus (as the Corfu Protocol refers to the area that constitutes the southern part of Albania) to give you a vivid (to you) example what can be brought on the table if or when the question of border-redrawn in the Balkans be raised. The problems with minorities are many not only regarding Albanians living in FYRoM and Kossovo (areas of the former Yugoslav Federation); Hungarians in Transylvania and Voivodina, Serbs and Croats in Bosnia/Herzegovina etc.; therefore, one must be very cautious and carefull whilst touching such delicate issues.
    Friendly advice: cool down and keep in mind that you knock the door of the EU; Greece, Bulgaria and Romania are already inside and raising nationalistic questions of “Greater Albania/Bulgaria/Serbia/Greece/Croatia etc.” is the worst advocate of EU-member candidacy.

  77. Alex

    @Ana Georgieva.There is goin to be such a thing as an east european eu–>euroasian union in 2015 with Russia,Kazakhstan,Armenia and Belarus.
    Possibly some others as Mongolia maybe

  78. Alex

    I d rather say there are some going to leave.
    There has been a survey made by infratest dimap asking the Germans how they think about western integration.The appreciation for the “West-bindung” is lower then it has ever been.Almost half of the people want to “stay in a neutral position between Russia and the west” while in eastern parts of Germany the number was over60%.

    More and more people getting mad about nato behaviour.53% of the people don t want nato to do “air policing” in the eastern countries,while only 40% want nato to increase its activities in the east.
    The survey tells that many Germans dream of beeing a “bigger switzerland”
    Congratiolations everybody,we fu***ng suck,but at least we made the first step and started to realize that.

  79. George Yiannitsiotis

    The history of the Balkans, Minor Asia, the Black Sea region, the Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East is connected primarily with GREECE.
    1. The Greeks were the first to expand to these regions, since the 1st Milenium BC. Nowadays, many cities in the region have kept their ancient Greek names (like Sympheropolis, Sevastoupolis in Crimea, Skopia in FYRoM, Agioi Saranta in Albania, numerous cities in Turkey, Alexandria in Egypt and elsewhere, Tripoli in Lebanon and Libya etc…)
    2. The ottoman empire was a by-product (the worst copy) of a series of empires based on the ancient Greek civic heritage; the best was the Macedonian Empire (the first and last purely Greek empire ever) that was succeeded by the Roman Empire and from its split to Eastern and Western the Byzantine Empire emerged and was “Hellenized” due to the fact that ancient Greek and not Latin was the language widely spoken in the regions controled by the Byzantine Empire. The ottomans conquered the Byzantine empire and the dark age started for the Balkans, and the Middle East almost a milenium after it started in Western Europe.
    3. However, the Greek philosophers and scientists of the era fled to the West triggering the Renaissance era that led to the end of the Dark age.
    Therefore, thinking of the backward trend brought in the Balkans by the ottoman empire, one must be very cautious regarding its by-product (Turkey) knocking the door of a progressive group of nations.

  80. Tarquin Farquhar

    @George Yiannitsiotis
    Hmmm, a rather passionate over-involved parochial response. “English” is NOT limited to mere European inputs and European influences – its a world language that acknowledges and rejoices in its diverse heritage – that includes its Sanskrit influences; something that moulded the Greek language too and of which you seem surprisingly ignorant of. NB: Please refer to the Indo-European ‘Tree of Languages’.

    Back to the subject at hand ie what country should join the EU next.

    Ukraine [West] perhaps?

    • George Yiannitsiotis

      Correct, the Indo-European tree; However, the bridge between sanskrit and English is ancient Greek! That is what I did not make clear with my previous post.
      Back to the subject: Should one prefers war instead of peace and stability, he may drop to the garbage the Bush-Gorbatchev Agreement (1988) that led to the re-unification of Germany. Russia will NEVER accept an advanced NATO base some km from Moscow! neither the repetition of the Baltic-states senario regarding Russian speaking populations outside the Russian Federation. Division of Ukraine will be the worst for the West European Usurers Corporation (“EU”) senario: the wealth lies in the eastern and southern parts-the west is not industrially developed and can be by-passed regarding gas-pipelines easily. Therefore, incoprorating a ruined, non-viable W.Ukraine is synonym of throwing European tax-payers money to Danaides jar. Think of it!

  81. George Yiannitsiotis

    To set the record straight:
    1. The only problem regarding borders between Greece and Turkey is to define on the map the line between the greek and Turkish continental self and zone of exclusive economic activity; however, Turkey raised the stakes in 1996, Jan.30-31 by occupying for a couple of hours a Greek rocky island in SE Aegean (Ymia that previously belonged to Italy as the maps attached to the Turkish-Italian Ankara protocol 1932 clearly show); that is not the first time Turkey refuses to abide by the principles and rules of the International Law of the Sea. The right to Zone of Exclusive Economic Activity regarding Castelorizo (SE Aegean 70nm Eastern from Rhodes) is also denied by the Turkish military-political establishment though the ILof the Sea is clear that islands with economic activity have their own right to such zone.
    2. A state that does not abide by the principles and rules of International Law can not be a member of a Union based primarily on the preservation of Common Law; I do not raise the stakes regarding the Turkish behaviour against the Republic of Cyprus (a member of the EU) where there are now diplomatic relations at all and some 40.000 occupation troops are on the island since it would be obvious that in reality there is no ground for even starting talks (not negotiations for membership) between the EU and Turkey for accession.
    3. There are no claims over Turkish territory; though heavily populated by Greeks, Imvros and Tenedos were awarded to Turkey according to the Lausane Treaty provisions (1923); this Treaty and the Montrai Protocol (1936) have guaranteed peace between the two countries for more than half-a century (till 1974 where Turkey invaded Cyprus); refusal to abide by the principles and rules of International Law lead to problems
    4. Regarding History: the Ottoman empire was the worst by-product of a series of empires that switched off the ancient Hellenic Civilization; since Theodossios the Great (396 AD), the Byzantine Empire turned against the Hellenic heritage; the destruction of the Library in Alexandria (Egypt) benchmarks the start of the Medieval Era for Europe; the Western Roman empire was destroyed by the ones who later on turned against a revived Byzantine Empire (Ioustinianos 6th century AD saved it by turning to the Greek language that gave his authority a solid base for almost 5 centuries), namely the Crusaders. The Roman and Byzantine Empires had lost the key element of ancient Hellenic Civilization: the citizen as self-guided, free-thinking man. The ottoman empire imposed a more brute form of the authocratic rule of its predecessors: it embeded the rule of the Sultan/Emperor on subordinates. Thanks to the Arabs, in particular of those in Cordoba, Spain, Ancient Hellenic heritage was rescued and in a combination with some enlightened Greek scholars that fled the Ottoman rule, the Renaissance started in Italy and Paris. That period, the Medieval-Dark era became the burden of the Greeks and all other “subordinates to the Sultan” peoples in the Balkans. The Western European countries progressed, Greece rest behind, hindered by the backward ottoman rule. History speaks of itself.
    5. We do have many in common as peoples; we must be carefull (after the Armenian and Greek Holocaust in Minor Asia by Kemal Atatourk forces 1914-1922, masterminded by a German Military advisor) regarding state relations to abide by the principles and rules of International Law and preserve the two Treaties I mentioned above (esp. the Lausane Treaty brutally violated in Istanbul and Ismir, 1955).
    Yours sincerely,
    George Yiannitsiotis, PhD
    Athens, Greece

  82. Krystian Zdrojewski

    Montenegro would be next country to join for sure!

    San Marino,Monaco,Andorra and Liechtenstein are they planing to join EU?

  83. Debating Europe

    Dear Maxxx, thank you for your contribution to the debate! We did not block any of your comments, so all of the ones you posted should be there!

  84. Livia

    Romania won’t recognize Kosovo due to ethnic tensions with the Hungarian (although it’s a fuzzy matter, historically they’re of German sorgint and have been “imported” during the Austro-Hungarian Empire) minority on it’s territory. It’s a long lasting (historical), territorially-concentrated minority and rumors that they want autonomy have been circulating.
    Sorry Kosovo, it’s not personal. We just have issues.

    • HT

      Transilvania originally used to have Hungarian majority. And actually Romanian workers have been “imported” by the Austrians to Transilvania, because the Romanians worked cheaper than Hungarians. Romanians immigrated to Transilvania, because life was better in the Kingdom of Hungary than in Wallachia or Moldova.
      Since 1920 – as Transilvania belongs to Romania – they started a forced immigration and a forced Romanization in Transilvania.
      I – as a Hungarian – accept that Transilvania is now part of Romania and I don’t want to have bad relationship with Romanians, I don’t have any problems with them. But you guys shouldn’t falsify history. You guys took Transilvania from us. Okay, we (most of us) accepted. But you can’t take our history…

  85. Tarquin Farquhar

    @George Yiannitsiotis
    Wow – your linguistic knowledge is certainly impressive BUT you seem to omit the fact that ALL European languages were heavily influenced by Indian languages such as Sanskrit.

    Remember, the European languages tree is in actuality a branch of the Indo-European languages tree.

  86. HT

    The countries you mentioned also have territories that may strive for seceding from them. So the reason for them not to recognize Kosovo is rather to keep their country together. And not primarily to support Serbia.
    I am Hungarian and I know that Romania and Slovakia are somewhat affraid about to loose territories inhabited by local Hungarian minorities. However I don’t really think this could happen.
    Actually Slovakia is now in better economical situation than Hungary, so I don’t think local Hungarians would want to join to Hungary (there are no Hungarian autonomy attempts in Slovakia). In Romania there are some Hungarian movements to create an autonomous region inside Romania, but this isn’t about to secede Romania. Just about to create a provice that has higher autonomy than other Romanian provinces (e.g. language usage, own flag, etc.). Also you have to consider that this region (Székely Land) is located in the center of Romania, so it’s absolutely impossible and wouldn’t make sense to make it independent, whatmore to join it to Hungary.
    However Spain is the only country that has real chance to loose territory (Catalonia), so in case of Spain I understand their negative feelings about any seccessions…

  87. alvarobueno

    Probably, Russia should be the next candidate. Or Turkey.

  88. vasilis_koutronas

    Turkey should be the next country whichi will join the European Union. The “war” between Greece and Turkey should be stopped right now.

  89. Yvetta

    None. Europe needs to sort out its own house first before letting any new members in. I didn’t know that Croatia has joined. I am not sure this is good news for the EU. Only countries that are politically mature and stable and financially strong should join at this stage. The old members are already unhappy about financing major projects in Eastern Europe while getting nothing in return. Those countries are not able to contribute to the pot, only taking money out and that at a time when pre-existing members are struggling to survive financially.

  90. Levent

    what did West do for The Turkish Cypriots killed by EOKA? Do you remember the bloody x-mas in Cyprus? Turkey is guarantor state of republic of Cyprus as Greece and UK.
    Gökçeada and Bozcaada are two turkish islands in aegean sea, will we ask you when choosing name of OUR islands?

  91. missangas

    Why don’t you try England it’s time or not ?

  92. Peter M.

    Well I think the next country to join the EU is Montenegro. A small ,mediterranean country that has population of only half a million. Actually more Montenegrins live in Belgrade than in Podgorica. Montenegro has a perspective in tourism and they are improving their infrastructure. After Montenegro Serbia and Macedonia are next. Serbia does have problems with Kosovo, but I think that the economy is a bigger problem than Kosovo. The Brussels Agreement pretty much ended long ethic conflict in Kosovo and Metohija. But Serbia has financial problems and high unemployment rate. Well, it’s not far from EU members, Spain has similar unemployment rate, and Bulgarian purchasing powers is almost the same as Serbian. Macedonia has cultural problems that can be solved easily, and I think that will happen soon. Also, ofc their economy must improve. This three countries are official candidates. I don’t think that the other two candidates will join. Iceland lost interest in EU, but they would be a perfect member. The other one, Turkey will never be a full EU member. Turkey has young population ( 25% is younger than 20 ), so that would end with mass population. Secondly Turkey shares a border with Syria, Iraq, Iran and Lebanon. That could mean ( if Turkey joins the Schengen zone) that a lot of illegal immigrants could come. After all Turkey is an Asian country. Also they have a lot of freedom isues that must be solved. After these candidate countries, Albania is the closest EU member. Albania does have lover living standard, but I think they have a lot of potentials as a Mediterranean country. I think they will join in next 10-15 years.
    Bosnia in the other hand is a failed country. It has 3 presidents, 12 prime ministers and almost 100 ministers, with the population of 3,8 million. It needs to solve a lot of ethnic, administrative, constitutional problems as well as financial and economical problems. I don’t see them as EU members in next 15 years, but we will see. Other countries like Ukraine,Georgia,Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus have not signed Stabilisation and Association Agreement ( SAA), yet so I think they won’t join soon.

  93. Sait Sevinc

    no fear friends;
    İstanbul population 15.000.000… Greek friends think again, they want to İstanbul, I think is Joke…may be we want to take again east thraceia.My grandfather was born Ottoman State in Batı Trakya (west thraceia) and obligated to İstanbul.more or less 10.000.000 Turks origin come from Balkans.
    I am a Turk and I don’t want to enter EU ..And mostly Turks think like me. You are right; We are a big country and big population and we have got different our history from west europeans.. We learnt , we are growing everything area . Turkey and Russia come the back! This is game and players EU, Turkey,Russia and USA. EU lost Turkey 10 years ago..we are 80.000.000 and we have got Turkic Countries (Azarbaycan,Turkmenistan,Uzbekistan, Kyrgystan,etc. and Old Ottomans area..That is enough to us..

  94. Turkey Turkey

    Individiually, i like Europe and its people .Mostly kind,smart and nice poeple. As a Turkish cizitizen i dont want to be a part of Europe, because my people dont deserve this.They are mostly fanatic and not open minded (%60) . + We are a muslim country, if Turkey join the europe ,sooner or later, they will try to change your minds they will want u to see as muslims. I, as a turkish citizen dont want my people ruin your minds. I worn u nice people, you may love Turkey but my people see beauty as danger or weakness. I am an atheist but cant tell this in my country because they are idiot ..

  95. Arben

    It doesn’t really matter who joins anymore as the Europian Union is cracked and coming to an end. What is the point of this debate?!

  96. tili

    peace is all what we need not to join eu or to leave it . i’m albanian and i’m proud but i also love kosovo and serbia, people most forget the past only like this they will do the smartest thing for the future

  97. A

    We should skip the “benefiting” part out of welcoming any new states since almost all of them are small to even mean anything in economic way, so in other hand which countries would cause less instability would probably be Montenegro or Macedonia, EU would spend less time investing and repairing there rather than in Serbia, Turkey, Bosnia or Albania. So in the advantage sector Montenegro is leading since they have already adopted the euro and then you have Macedonia as potential unused economic resource since basically Yugoslav times. So those two would definitely worth welcoming in the club of the EU

  98. Guy Fleksnes

    I’m guessing they’ll join roughly in this order:

    1. Montenegro (2017-2025)
    2. Serbia (2017-2025)
    3. Scotland (2019-2028)
    4. Albania (2020-2030)
    5. Catalonia (2022-2035)
    6. Iceland (2022-2035)
    7. BiH (2025-2040)
    8. Macedonia (2025-2040)
    9. Andorra (2030-2050)
    10. San Marino (2030-2050)
    11. Armenia (2030-2050)
    12. Georgia (2030-2050)

    Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Vatican: will not apply for membership
    Turkey, Azerbaijan, Moldova, Morocco, Mauritania, Cape Verde: will apply but get rejected
    Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan: already started their anti-EU union, probably wouldn’t have applied anyway

    • Guy Fleksnes

      Oh, and as for Ukraine and Kosovo, I simply have no idea.

  99. CWEK

    I would like Ukraine to be amongst the Countries offered candidate status and to fulfill its rightful place within the EU this would promote peace and stability in the region and with migrant workers take care of the EUs bloated welfare budget with extra tax revenues and productivity

  100. alex

    i say that the EU should wait a little before accepting new members! the newly members are still underdeveloped, and there are imigration problems all across europe + the gipsy’s that need to be integrated into society(i say we ship’em to london and let the brits deal with them=joke), if these problems are not resolved the candidate members wont have a union to adhere.

  101. Amir

    I think Serbia and Montenegro will be the next countries will be joining the EU and Kosovo will have special bilateral agreement such as Andora, San Marino

  102. Zoran

    In my opinion, the next enlargement will be all the western balkan countries as a pack, but not sooner than 2017, possibly in 2020. The western balkan area has a little less than 20 million citizens, with GDP (PPP) of $205.761 billions similar to Romania witch has 21 mill citizens and GDP (PPP) of $285.131 billions. By 2020 with a growth rate of 5% per year, the western balkan would be at the current level of Romania, and all the other political nonsenses will be resolved, after all we are all living in 21 century and all living in europe, the youth doesn’t want borders anymore…

  103. cgbyles

    They can all join but cash subsidies only on a drip feed bases, also there should be no freedom to move from county to country because so far its a one way road to the UK and Im afraid we can not support any more if at all in the future .

  104. dave truth

    Georgia is a joke country: 5 year old kids can drink beer in bars and vehicles do not need to pass any form of checks to be on the road. If Georgia joins the EU then you might as well allow Algeria too as that is also not in Europe and has far higher standards than Georgia. Don’t let the new glass and concrete of Tbilisi and Batumi fool you…get out into the countryside to discover what is really going on

  105. mohamed

    Hi my friend half of morocain the are from europe i’m origenale europe from germane and all moroccain berber thyer from germane but i dont cknow why europe peaople refus to our country jeion in europe infact our country i think them dont think about europ and in these time we find petrole that make us who win our petrole and our country not let europe take petrole in half price

  106. Roberto Guerra

    In my opinion Serbia should be the next country to join the EU if they recognize Kosovo.

  107. Goran

    The whole ex yu including Slovenia and Croatia, Albania, Romania, Bulagaria, are bunch of primitive people, who should never and should have never joined the EU. Also, the east of European Union is the same. From Italy, Austria and west that is the real Europe. On the south, it is Greece, rest banana states, from where everybody normal would run away

  108. abdallah

    Please i wont belarus to join the union

  109. Ivan

    I think first country to join the European Union should be Montenegro,Macedonia,Serbia and than Bosnia and Herzegovina.

  110. Danyal Ahmad

    turkey, Azerbaijan, Switzerland, Norway and Iceland Should Join EU…

  111. Ciprian

    I strongly believe that Turkey should work with the EU and Greece and solve the Cyprus “problems” … Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, Macedonia and Bosnia Hertegovina will join in 2024, in my opinion; Ukraine probably not until 2050, Moldova probably only if it unites with Romania … Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan could join only after Turkey … Norway when their resources are gone, Switzerland after a banking crisis, Iceland should negociate their “fishing problem” and it would be better for them to join as soon as possible … Greenland could join after independence or they will already be recognized in the EU, Cape Verde also could have a chance of joining if they apply ( the canaries are close to them, they could be considered of being in europe, they speak a portuguesse language and they’re a small nation with little impact )

    • Drew

      If Cape Verde joins then why not Mozambique and Angola and Brazil? They also speak Portuguese language. Oh, and how about Somalia, they speak Italina and how about Zambia, they speak English. How then about Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, Venzuelam, Cuba, Mexico, because they speak Spanish. Oh and USA speaks English, Canada, Australia, New Zealand too? Because Nouvelle-Caledonie can, so why not NZ? You name it? Maybe Japan can join because they are just nice….

  112. Nostradamus

    2018 – Moldova will “join” because they will probably UNITE with Romania as they used to be…
    2018-2020 – Turkey and Iceland
    2024 – 2026 – Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, FYR Macedonia, Bosnia Hertegovina
    2030-2034 – Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cape Verde
    2040-2050 – Switzerland, Norway, Greenland
    2050-2060 – Ukraine and Belarus
    >2100 – Israel, Lebanon, Syria and Kaliningrad ( Enlargement Complete )

    • Drew

      First of all “kaliningrad” should have all its towns and coties and its name renamed into something more historic and more reasonable. As we all know Kalinin was a war criminal. After that “kaliningrad” either becomes a 4th Baltic country or is returned to Lithuania or is split between its neighbouring countries.

  113. Niall Nizamovic

    Well actually, turkey has some advantages and disadvantages to join the EU. For advantages It ‘s connecting the europe with asia. They have good economy which is better than the most of EU members. But they have disadvantages like they are become less democracier beacuse of the Erdoğan’s vision. They have the worst income inequality in europe. And the enviroment is so plain that some parts are good and some parts are bad . That means good and bad is living together in Turkey. They have to be democraier and stop the Erdoğan Movement. If turkish people can make it i think they can join EU in 2018-2023.

  114. Adrian

    I suppose Serbia and Montenegro are next in line to join EU but it will not happen before 2020, that’s for sure. It is probably not even possible before due to the long negotiation process.
    There is still possibility, although very slim, that Macedonia could join together with Montenegro and Sebia but that means a lot of “ifs”. So Macedonia will probably have to wait the newest candidate country, Albania, in some other round of enlargement.
    As per Bosnia and Kosovo, I don’t see the possibility for them to join at least untill 2030. These countries are not even candidates yet. They both face problems regarding their survival as states.
    Turkey: If any country deserves to join, it is Turkey, a 50-years old candidate country with almost frozen negotitations for years. I hope Turkey will join at least in 2023, a year Ankara set as a target date. Turkey’s membership will bring a lot of advanteges to the EU. After all, Turkey deserves EU membership. Unlike Cyprus, an island geographically in Asia, Turkey is partly located in Europe. The major European town is Istanbul (14 m inhabitants).
    Eastern Euorpe: I don’t see the possibility for Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia or Azerbaijan to join at all. Not to mention Belarus or Armenia. That would mean a new conflict with Russia.
    But EU should consider the possibility of Israel to join. It is culturally a European country, just like Cyprus and (to a certain degree) Turkey.

  115. LiverpoolGBR

    Before expanding further east, we should be filling the existing gaps. Switzerland, Norway and Greenland are much more valuable assets than Moldova or Georgia.

  116. Sergio

    Next to join are Montenegro, Serbia and Macedonia.
    Europeans probably will not want Muslim countries (Turkey, Bosnia, Albania and Kosovo) within the EU.
    Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan and Armenia will probably never join.
    Iceland, Norway and Switzerland can enter EU when ever they want, but they refuse to do that.

  117. Laurinda Seabra

    none .. its time that the EU was disbanded as the EU has failed in its purpose – the one that was “sold” to the country members citizens as benefits.

  118. Raul Machado

    Tell me one thing about EU good and I will tell you next country…… Everyone is earning money too much to do nothing….. Governments cuts on the workers benefits but in the EU parliament they refuse to reduce in 10%….. What is doing Tusk? What have done Durao Barroso?

  119. Gorgios Everytime

    None. EU should focus on getting their shit together. We have the biggest club of bureaucracy and corruption in the world. The addition of Russia will definitely advance this club but keys keep it like this for the next 30 years until countries and people see some actual good out of this.

  120. Laoi Ó Murchú

    There’s no more joining before 2020, and none other than Serbia look like they’re remotely ready to join – if we’re looking at countries other than those already associated with the EU in some form (Iceland, Switzerland, etc.).

  121. Ahmed Hrustić

    Realistically thinking, there are many more countries that should be a part of the European Union. However, the country that is going to join next is Montenegro.

  122. Orfeas Marios Evangelou

    Turkey & israel ??? None of them belong to europe geographically, yet both of them play in the annual basketball euro???league

  123. Orfeas Marios Evangelou

    By the way, Turkey already has that blue font on the left of the car number plates with the TR innitials but without the EU stars above it. They push their way in in any matter :)

  124. Danijel Knezevic

    Only ones that could (Iceland, Norway and Swiss) don’t want to.
    Only other country that is on the right path is Montenegro, the others are to far behind to join in the near future.

  125. Aleksandros Ho Megas

    Island, Switzerland and Norway; but those countries are to smart to lose their independence to nondemocratic Brussels bureaucrats. So then we should look at current candidates; and from them my vote would go to Turkey since it is the strongest economy of current candidate states.
    But EU in any case needs a revision which will move away from the dangerous idea of federation.

  126. Toni Muñiz

    Not Turkey, thats for sure. Might as well include Siria, Iraq. They do not share same values or culture. No islamic country can be part of EU. As for other states, as someone has aleready said. Focus on making EU right. Because or it is done properly or might as well split. So talks of making it bigger are worthless.

  127. Tim Rokka

    Only countries that can contribute to the union without becoming another drain on the taxpayers already within EU… Turkey: No, having lived in that country for an extended time, its population is not european, nor do they consider themselves european, its still an immature nation. The Balkans, sure, if they can prove that their economy is strong enough!

  128. Dávid Juraj Szücs

    Iceland, Montenegro in my opinion. Both the EU and these countries should follow more profound discussions.

  129. Daniel Teppe

    EU should solve its inner problems before thinking of another enlargement. Once this is done the most likely candidate imo would be Montenegro…however I am afraid they will once again hasten things and admit countries before those or the EU already existing are prepared…

  130. Robin Molnar

    As Serbia is the larger part of the now-dismantled Yugoslavia, I would expect Serbia to join first, so as to lead the way for the smaller Western Balkans states that are still struggling to find some European identity for themselves.

    Muntenegro is also a good candidate and should be considered.

    Ukraine, as much as I love it, is at least one decade away from joining, due to rampant corruption and long-held reforms. I believe Yatseniuk and Poroshenko will do whatever they can to accelerate Ukraine joining the EU, the EU is sponsoring Ukraine, but the parliament of Ukraine is only newly pro-European, and European membership preparations take time.

    I do believe, however, that by 2030, most European countries will join the EU in a peaceful, meaningful and prosperous block.

  131. Ibrahim Uzun

    Why you don’t ask the people already in the EU if they are happy with the current situation and than get in more countries,
    Greece
    Portugal
    Spain
    Italy
    Ireland they are already suffering economic crisis ,
    So the EU is not magic box .

  132. Brian McLaughlin

    Turkey have no chance of entering with Erdogan in charge. It would be wreckless to extend the free movement of people to Turkey given that it has not totally dealt with extremists from the Middle East- it’s an easy passport to the rest of Europe.

  133. Ivan Drvarič

    Of course it is essential to respect each other desires, vision. But it seems in Europe Union are at the moments several obstructions for consolidated development and more equal and balanced access of the people in several Eu coutries for access and right for wellfare of their families, employment, educational right for all aged group, standards for health life , food , habitance conditions. Still so many bureacratic execuses for stability in economy that even more aggressive economies when considering wellfare of middle class is under the pressure of limiting their rights to access for quality of life, education, employment are more friendly than EU present relationship to people.
    So expanding of EU in such moment when not consolidated in own objectives to own present population …what exactly expanding or inviting new coutries means: postponing of the problem and masquerading some basic issues? Or new contries could cotribute to stronger standards and alignment to quality of life and cohabitance with nature and strong values for people and quality of life and new paradigmas for environmental protection and technologies that can bring new employments and higher added value. If this is the issue than Iceland can contribute to EU with their experience how they originally saved their economy from exhausting people of the financial institutions debt policy.
    But wondering if Iceland people are willing to risk their hardly provided status and efforts to be dilluted in EU needs and expectations.

    It seems that prime task of EU states now should be to consolidate economies and infrastructure in all states provide and initiate processes and open access to educational and employment resurces based on the new infrastructure development and provide conditions that new countries are then invited in transparent and strong visionary community with vary exact and strong expectations and objectives. First thing first might be good strategy.
    After consolidating economy and infrastructure reasoable and strategy of priorities could be expanding in the direction to support potentials of future development of economies with corridors Africa North Africa over SE Europe to the Eastern countries .
    Guess this process is not possible going simultaneously with consolidating relationship with Russia and Mediterenian region and specially North Africa. The corridor that joint these two region demands to be economically stable, open, free of internal controversies, devoted to EU idea and with logistically supported in regional infrastructure of environmental friendly transport for people and goods and supported with green concepts for energy production as for transport possibilities. Also local sustainability in food production and green surfaces like re forestation to support global efforts in minimizing CO2 fingerprint. So the corridor is optimized for future flows and providing development initiatives to bith connected regions of corridor.

  134. Eu CuMine

    Serbia, Moldova, Ukraine, Russia, Switzerland and all other european countries

  135. Jane Payet

    The European Union should first consolidate it’s UNION before including anyone else…

  136. Shah

    What a laymen discussion. subjective opinions are irrelevant cuz they include the opinion of nazis in Europe. What matters is ‘acquis communautaire’, human rights and economy of the prospective member state. take a look at Art. 22 of EU Fundamental charter of human rights, RESPECT FOR DIVERSITY. After that you can participate in such a debate by avoiding the outdated arguments based on religion, race and culture of people which leads to open discrimination in legal world!

  137. Peter Chloupek

    Switzerland, Norway and Island would be the only acceptable candidates. All other former eastern countries are far away from ready.

  138. Karl Hofer

    Afrika,Asia , Rssia ,Latin Amerika,USA and Canad – do you think thats enough for the moment ?

  139. Lesley McDade

    No country should join the EU – its as big as it should be. There now needs to be an effort to re-create “Europe” the concept across the globe – at least another 6 or 7 Europe’s.

  140. Rémi Martin

    Ask people of countries before deciding something! I was never asked if EU should grow, who decided that???

  141. Tom Mosen

    im sorry to say; but if EU dont start taking human rights, ILO, and the poor population serious – then we wont be talking about who is going to join next, but what country is first to leave

  142. Péter Sebők

    The British Empire has to leave as it is a burden to the further development of the EU. The majority of britons would feel better.

  143. Osman Suada Jahic

    Bosnia and Herzegovina – not because of it’s politicians, but because of it’s people deserve better life, too… We are very patient, very diligent, and very loyal people…and whoever gives us a chance and show us a care, we will return it double… This country is in this very bad position because everybody is trying to get something from it – in political, geo-political, ethnic or any other way, and unfortunately we can’t take care of our future, because too many fractions, foreign and local don’t want to do anything to make a some progress…The population of this country is almost 4 Million, the size of one mid-sized city in EU, and we are not lazy people, we are carrying very painful history on our backs every day, so if anyone deserves to be accepted, even with exception, that’s Bosnia and Herzegovina…

  144. x

    if you dont let turkey, georgia, ukraine, azerbeijan, armenia, moldova to join EU. They will find another way to improve themselves. So you will miss them and stay smaller. its not like going to war with them. its improving each other.

  145. Vincent Kleijn

    I would say New Zealand ;-) No kidding. In first instance I would say to keep it like it is right now. Maybe by time the countries of the Balkan can join but not right now. We should support them though in reorganizing their country so they can join on a long-term basis.

  146. Matteo Turturro

    Ukraine!!! (Y)
    Hoping this would set it free from Putin the Tyrant before it will be too late…

  147. Dimitris

    Norway or Switzerland. But they don’t want to, so I guess it’ll be Belarus or Serbia.

    • Martin Muller

      Even more – the question shall be: who should leave the EU first?

  148. Ibrahim Uzun

    If Turkey decide to have very close relations with rusia EU is going to lose very strategically important partner and that is one of the big steps the end of the EU ,
    Today Turkey has been waiting for fifty years on the door for the permission to enter the EU, it won’t be surprise for me if EU decide in one night and accept Turkey in the EU.

  149. Ruy Jervis de Athouguia

    Im Portuguese and i think Republic of Moldova as the most poor country of Europe deserves a chance to go to EU, look Portugal before goes to CEE was a myserable country now we are diferents of course many people say we are in crisis since 2010, but the fault of the Portguese situation is of the bad internal politicians we have. But i think the big problem is the euro not the EU, it was too soon to some countrys like Spain, Portugal and Greece to go to euro in 2002. The solution is now a United States of Europe…….but of cours the most rich countrys like Germany, Finland etc etc not gonna be solidaire with the most poor countrys its very rare the rich people worry wiht the most poors!

  150. Andrew Lally

    Imperial overstretch and white elephant projects before the Second Fall of the Roman Empire.
    And just like the last time, the Irish will have to rebuild Europe – again.

  151. Leo

    In my opinion, Europe must focus on strengthening its’ economy, democratization of decision-making process and careful balancing in foreign affairs’ theater. Europe must redefine (or re-invent) its’ appeal as a zone of peace and prosperity through common market. Otherwise, Europe will crumble, and, in any case, it will have little to offer to any potential candidate. In similar fashion, potential candidate should be able to contribute to EU. In that sense, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland are welcomed at all times, nonetheless of written above. With reforms, way out of economic stagnation, more jobs, applying to bigger trade and investment partnerships, EU should be able to find its’ way from current slowdown. Than, we can observe possible candidates. I cannot say that either of the countries mentioned in article is self-imposing as credible, obvious candidate – maybe I am wrong. EU also made grave error in judgement by accepting a lot of ill-prepared countries as Romania and Bulgaria into its’ ranks, and t sent very wrong message to their neighbors i.e. that they can, somehow, get a free pass, and focus on lobbying instead on institutional changes. If you wish, real enlargement should be right now to bring countries such as Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Croatia back on path to progress, employment and better future, and not increasing load with countries in similar (if not much worse) conditions.

  152. Paolo Pedone

    In 2013 , Croatia became the newest Member State of the E.uropean U.nion. Seven or eight ( 7/8 ) countries are now widely seen as likely candidates to follow them in and eventually join the E.uropean U.nion. However, with the E.U. still struggling with ever-present economic malaise, plenty of critics are lining up to warn that ? bigger isn?t always better ? when it comes to European integration . No new countries are likely to join the 28-nation bloc until at least 2015 , with some arguing that the E.U. won?t be ready to take on new members until 2020 . There are also several roadblocks in place for some of the candidate countries . Kosovo?s independence , for example , is not recognised by all E.U. countries , although a surprise Serbia-Kosovo deal , brokered by E.U. High Representative Catherine Ashton in 2013 , paves the way for its eventual E.U. membership . Turkey has been pushing for membership for decades , and it could still be at least 15 years before negotiations can be completed , especially with the E.U. so divided over whether Turkey should even join at all , but actually U.K. and Deutschland is too contrray. Maybe Ukraine , but only after the end of the civil war between the friends of Moscow..
    The other ” Western Balkan ” countries have all been told they can one day follow Croatia into the E.U., as long as they make progress on democratic and economic reforms. However, a dispute with Greece over the name ? Macedonia ? has frozen that country?s membership prospects seemingly permanently. Iceland was keen to pursue membership after the financial crisis rocked the tiny Atlantic nation in 2008 , but a new eurosceptic government recently suspended membership talks altogether and actully it’is out ( cause her ” Pub. Deb.” never covered ) . To read some in-depth analysis of the progress made by ” Western Balkan ” nations towards E.U. membership , be sure to check out the recent report published by our sister think-tank , ” Friends of Europe “.

  153. Ciprian Constantinescu

    No other country should join the EU until 2030. We need to solve our own problems before we accept new countries in the club.

  154. Gullu Mammadova

    I’m from Azerbaijan and i don’t want my country to join the EU. Cause actually Europe is like Titanic, first they must solve theirs own problems. Azerbaijan is rich in oil and gas and we have a good union with Turkey and Georgia.

  155. Mihai Rusu

    Ukraine as it will assure our needs for food for Europe to grow and Turkey as it will be the gateway to the middle east and its energetic resources. In the long term North Africa and Caucas, but we need to invest alot in them. But the Black Sea and Mediteraneean will be a huge advantage for trade and prosperity.

  156. Mihai Rusu

    Ukraine as it will assure our needs for food for Europe to grow and Turkey as it will be the gateway to the middle east and its energetic resources. In the long term North Africa and Caucas, but we need to invest alot in them. But the Black Sea and Mediteraneean will be a huge advantage for trade and prosperity.

  157. George Lambert

    Georgia !!!! Save south eastern Europe, save the region! If you see the country and people they deserve being in EU more than many others. It’s definitely an Europe from the viewpoint of values and culture.

  158. Mustafa Muftuoglu

    I see some poor comments against the membership of Turkey and I wanted to write my comment which normally I don’t like to share in this platform.
    First argument of people here is Erdogan. OK, you guys are fairly right about it but the membership is a process which Turkey experiences for almost half of the century. So you guys can’t blame Erdogan for everything and this process.
    Another issue is collaboration with IS. Oh how intelligent you people are. :) Turkey is the first country which is under damage of IS. And look how many British, French and other EU member state citizens are fighting in IS. So stop bullying with that serious case.

    There are many things Turkey should fix and rise. If anti-Turkey people could come with right argues, I would definitely understand their worries but now it just looks like something funny.

    Turkey has got different, rich, inheritance and dynamics over this land. Instead of focusing to EU, they should see whole geography and its positive effects.

  159. Vaggelis Ridvald Dhimo

    I think that Albania should be the next country. It is well known that albanians want to enter to EU more that any other state. As it has gain the candidate status, it’s time to be a full member. Eurosceptism has to be faced. It would be great for albanian citizens and for the albanian students to move freely.

  160. Alidea

    It is Interesting to see how this kind of debate goes feeding the spin doctors of some particular Balkan countries. So far the comments I have read are done by subjective perspectives; be it nationalistic or EU ignorant (part of the current if we may say so EU citizens).
    To the nationalistic ones I have to say well done with the pejoration of the image of your neighbors. It helps and preserves the negative perception of the Balkans!
    To the EU ignorant who speaks about contributor and net benefit benefit countries, I simply have to say that the so called contributions made are overstated and that in many cases the core EU countries are also the ones to profit with preferential status in the investments they make in these not yet member states. There is EU and there are EU actors, whatever they sell as news the core member states drive the game. States remain unitary actors!
    Going to the debate, none of the current candidate or not yet member states fulfills the Copenhagen criteria! However, EU criteria can be shifted seeing its long term institutional interests merging with main actor’s state interests, such as Russia’s puppet in the Balkans Serbia for example and its influence in the EU energy security problem . To conclude EU has shown not to apply the same standards when it comes to state’s path to full membership, Greece and Portugal became members based in minimal requirements as opposed to the accession of .Bulgaria and Romania for example. Western Balkans have additional requirements based on the failure to properly integrate the later entrants harmoniously with their domestic reforms etc etc. Personally, being an Albanian I hope we fulfill the reforms to become members and finally decide to say NO. There is a clear core and periphery created in today’s EU reality when it comes to development and financial clusters, the later one member state enters the more the peripheral status will be sealed for it!

  161. Raul Machado

    Say one thing good about UE, I will give ? 5…. Say one thing bad about UE I should receive ? 1….. I will be rich!!

    • Riha

      Fully agree

  162. Nobedar

    Macedonia… I think it is better than Greece…

  163. a Balkanese

    The countries from the Western Balkans have to join the EU asap in order to make the region more secure from further ethnic tensions and conflicts, protect the region from Russian influence and interference with their internal affairs etc. The faster we delete those borders the quicker we will start making business and realize we are all the same people, many of us speaking the same language, and all of us sharing the same ancestry and heritage. Whatever that is.

  164. L.C.

    Next EU state will certainly be Serbia, whenever that might happen.

  165. Nikos Themelis

    There are countries that want to join the EU and/or the Euro? Are they insane? don’t they see that a slave market is European Union?Don’t they see what a chain and whip is the euro?

  166. teresa

    i think algeria,africa should join the eu ,,,,

  167. WL

    Serbia will be the next member-state of the European Union

  168. Davide Zoran Parenti

    Iceland… there’s no sense they stop the accession procedure just five years after they asked to enter. We should say to the icelanders to decide now: become part of the EU now or never in the future

  169. David Müldner

    The union is only big enough when the entire geographical area which we call Europe is united into a federative democratic multi-ethnic state without corruption and discrimination on whatever ground. The next country to join should be a country, that is able and willing to join based on the aforementioned criteria.

  170. Tani Tanito

    Join the EU.
    Motherfuckers they been in this continent the entire life.
    Who are those to decide for these countries?

  171. Nando Aidos

    Why should there be a “first in line list”? Why shouldn’t the order be “whomever has qualified” according to the set criteria? Why does everything need to be a race? Let us just do it right! No timeline needed!

  172. Ivan Burrows

    .

    You are joking right ?

    The question you should be asking is ‘Which country will be the first to leave the EU ?’

  173. Seán Rohan

    We wait until Scotland gets Independence…..kick out the English…..invite every European country except Russia and England to join. Become Federal. Kick the Russians out of Ukraine and Crimea….kick the english out of Northern Ireland and Gibraltar. Not sure about Wales

  174. Ricardo Schmitt

    We’re too big already.
    We should be worrying on federalizing the EU instead of growing our borders and taking more members in.

  175. Suncica Cvitkovic Anderson

    The EU will have HUGE problems, if violent and primitive serbia becomes part of EU. That will be WRONG move and could provoke IIIWW! They DO NOT BELONG amongst civilized people!

  176. Ciprian Anghel

    Montenegro is the next one. Goodluck and too bad the Icelandic Government decided to withdraw the application

  177. pagona_dimakou

    Montenegro first because:
    1st, it already uses euro as a currency
    2nd, low percentage of muslim / islam believers, who are difficult to be assimilated in european communities
    3rd, it has the second lower unempoyment percentage after Albania
    4th, small country with small population almost in the “heart” of Europe, very close to other EU-members
    5th, last but not least, it is important trade partner in Balkans…..

  178. Chris Alexander Zervas

    ~ None … Is this a real European Union as it Was planed FROM the ORIGINAL founders? ~ Look what they put Greece on NOW, while destroyed Greece agreed IN LONDON IN 1953, upon rebuilding Germany, after all these massacres THE GERMAN NAZIS CREATED into the Greek people during II W.W…Decide for yourself IF this is a union, that we, the European People would like to live in, under A German Occupation…

  179. Gomes João

    The most likely countries to join next are Montenegro and possibly Serbia. After that probably Scotland and Catalan Countries, followed by Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, then Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Bosnia and Moldova. Finally Ukraine, Northern Cyprus reunifies with Cyprus, and Turkey.

  180. Bronco Petrovic

    I think if all ppl are like this commentators here EU should dissolve! Too much nationalists here and hate, some ppl are pathological racists.

  181. lukas

    Albania should join the Eu.I belive it’s time .There are still problems to be solved,but they are doing huge steps to make things better,such as increasing of economy.More n’ more people are now working,roads are getting better everything is getting much better.Why not to be a part of EU ?!

  182. badita stefan (ROMANIA)

    Why Kosovo is listed as a country?! KOSOVO IS SERBIA!

    Serbia, Albania, Macedonia, Muntenegru, Turcia should be in E.U. as soon as posible ;) Maybe 2017. But not Ukraine!

    Also think at Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan as candidates and members from 2020.

  183. Ștefan Bădiță

    Why Kosovo is listed as a country?! KOSOVO IS SERBIA!

    Serbia, Albania, Bosnia, Macedonia, Muntenegru, Turcia should be in E.U. as soon as posible ;) Maybe 2017. But not Ukraine!

    Also think at Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan as candidates and members from 2020.

  184. Ivan Burrows

    .

    The only reason countries want to join the EU is for free handouts of money..

    Didn’t work out to well for Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Italy, France, Cyprus, etc, etc… did it.

  185. David Petty

    The EU has to be dissolved, an undemocratic totalitarian body with no mandate from the people of Europe, whom it claims to represent. Close it down now!

  186. Konstantina Maltezou

    Union means mutual respect! Unfortunately the EU has shown only arrogant politicians who think their power is to divide and congor under a union scheme! Oxymoron, isn’t it?

  187. Chris Mantas

    If Turkey then the Islamic Caliphate, Uzbekistan, Kirgistan, Kebapistan and the test of the third world

  188. Rémi Martin

    Like each empire, EU needs to grow, if it doesn’t, it will collapse! :-) None of the members was asked if he was agree others countrys to join EU, Fashington will deceide, nobody else!

  189. Faber Spadi

    What about all the countries starting with the letter “N”? Like Nicaragua, Namibia, New Zealand… For sure it makes more sense than some of the comments I’ve just read here… Like the people who wants to include Georgia and Ukraine (!!!) or others who want to include countries that DO NOT want to join EU.

  190. Korneel De Feyter

    Dear Ivan Burrows,

    You’re just as free to leave democratically as others are free to stay or join democratically.

    If the UK would decide to leave, we would respect that. Just as the UK and you would have to respect that the others stay and new members join.

  191. Kemal Çufoğlu

    I believe for creating a safer, peaceful and democratic Europe, All of the Balkan Countries (inc. Ukraine) shall accede to the EU.This will encourage these states to 1-) improve the quality of national services they provide, 2-)strengthen their economies and 3-) introduce modern human rights measures, for ensuring and protecting the rights and freedoms of its citizens. At least, apart from the UN bodies, EU and its bodies will make sure that while protecting the rights of all of the EU citizens, it will have the power to stop States from attacking/invading/mass killings AND instead, force them to provide better services for their people. However, we should not forget that this union had capitalist aims (and still) and first it started as an economic union; therefore, in order to create a balanced and peaceful Europe: first these states should be guided and helped to improve their economy so that parties within the EU cannot use /scapegoat other states or their slow/low economises: and give material/aid rise of the far right groups. (Ps: yes personally I want a United Federal Cyprus too ! )

  192. Rémi Martin

    As soon as France will leave this undemocratic union, it’s equal which land will join it! :-)

  193. Giovanni Pasquini

    The most importa question should be “What is the next European country coming out of the Eu?” In 1 and a half year the euro will disappear and after that also the Eu.

  194. Muscas Anne

    It’s failing immensely, what do they need more countries, Iceland turned then down, who’s next ..

  195. Joshua May

    I think the European Union is big enough right now and that we should consolidate what we have. We have a significant problem regarding corruption, especially amongst our newer members which MUST be addressed. We must also look at how our wealth is spread throughout the union, ensuring membership is still benefitting all states!

  196. Robert Santa

    How about making the EU functional first? After that, expansion should be on the table, maybe for the Western Balkans first. I doubt CH and NO will be rushing to join…

  197. Thomas Beavitt

    Let the EU wither and die. The sooner, the better. Then it can be possible to regroup within wider Eurasia.

  198. Ermal Senior Luka

    First question who rules the eu second who dose the earth elongs too?eu dose not rule no body and nobody can’t stop no one to trevel everywhere so stop talking things that rnt reasonable eu should split or every country should join in.

  199. Tatjana Turkovic

    Debating Europe I would kindly ask you to react on some of the replies in the comments… I believe there should be 0 tolerance towards hate speech and insults on a national basis, especially here. I am Croat and I feel deeply ashamed of the speech that Suncica Cvitkovic Anderson (possibly another Croat) is using here. Hate speech is considered a hate crime in EU, afterall. I hope somebody will report this incident to the relevant authorities… hate crimes should not be tolarated in any context towards any nation member http://fra.europa.eu/en/theme/hate-crime

  200. James Wilson

    The answer lies in the hands of the citizens of the applicant country; if they share our values and principles, and will live by our rules then they are welcome. If they do not, then there is no point to apply for membership.

  201. Geoffrey Howard

    No others at the moment. The others have to bring a value to the Union and vise versa. Besides we must get a lot done with what we have before considering other “countries ” to become a Cultural Region of the EU.

  202. Michelle Maria

    none. u should first bring up to standard the countries that are with you. insist on professionals coming in side by side and spending monies on programs that integrate newly joined countries with the best of yours. u seem to take things on without responsibility or expecting reponsibility from your members and that is slowly making u weak. we all want a strong europe.

  203. Max Berre

    I’d say that I’d like to see the EU develop better institutional capabilities first. The candidate countries should sit in EEA or EFTA while they wait for that

  204. Rafał Daniel Jas

    United Arab Emirates and United States. Or actually everything what is already united. African Union too!

  205. Anargyros Botsis

    NONE ! We have enough EU member states to bail out…and more complexity does not aid in any conceivable way to achieve what the designers of the European Union had in mind

  206. Paul Niland

    Is it not one of the founding principles of the EU that any country within the European continent can join the EU as long as they meet the membership criteria? In that case, the EU would have no ability to refuse new countries joining.

  207. Stanko Majcen

    Bosnia and Herzegovina. Great and ohnest people, they really impressed me as co-workers.

  208. Gent Sinani

    Until 2020 there must not be any enlargement of the EU, if there will be any other enlargement it will be en suicide for the EU. Until the 2020 the EU have to be reinforced inside and have to strengthen here presence to the candidate countries of western Balkans, because with such corrupted governments if this countries are accepted will be a shame for EU and a disappointment for the population of this countries. So the EU have to do more pressure to change the corrupted governments of the Western Balkans countries.

  209. Harald Heidegger

    We should take a break and think about a vision of EU. Where should it go to? For example, I think we need common fiscal policy if we want to keep the Euro. Another thing are the asylum seekers and the social benefits.

  210. Ciobîcă Ovidiu

    Before expanding, EU should consolidate itself and adopt a real unionist policy. Desposing the corporatist interferences in governmental institutions and rebuilding trust among the partner states would really make a step forward n order to achieve the European dream. Other that that, negociations with the other countries are essential and must be on EU agenda at a daily basis.

  211. Anthony Sisarich

    If I would be the one to decide it would be B&H ! I am from Croatia 100 % so am not bias but B&H was member of K u K monarchie before the first world war and Serbia was the one that coused it. MN was partly part of the same monarchie ( Boka Kotorska) so do not see the reason why not, but half of the population is of the Serbian origin and shall take a long time to put them on the leash !

  212. Anthony Sisarich

    If possible would be the first one to give my vote to enable ‘Vojvodina’ to join the same company !

  213. Behrose Qadiry

    The EU is not country or a confederation like the US, its just a union with targets to create a federal government so it can carry on on extending till its target states.

  214. Aldo Pitisci

    Strengthen the existing structure before speaking of enlargement.
    There are a number of problems in THE EU as is.
    A stronger EU first.

  215. Antoine Che

    My country should give it’s membership to whoever applies, so we could FLEEE !!!

  216. Vincent Kleijn

    Liechtenstein, San Marino, Monaco, Andorra, Norway, Iceland, Faeroer, Scotland ;-) ex-Jugoslavia, Moldova, Belarus, Ukraine and maybe on time even Russia :-D Alright, lets say all geographically pure European countries (so not Russia and Turkey, only those if they have a pure democracy and this counts also for the countries who are not so democratic at this time…)

  217. Eva Benko Zoltan

    I think we have repented quitea few for joing the austerty that makes us poorer every day . This is an establishment for the oligaequies , if I were them I would keep away from such a foolish comittment.

  218. Emiliana Silva

    Luis Miguel l o artigo. Recordas o Ingls e aprofundas o conhecimento de geografia. Eu aposto na entrada da Turquia, e tu?

  219. Ciobîcă Ovidiu

    Neither the US politics, nor the Russian ones should ever interfere with the European plans. After all, we do have common interests, nu matter being already a part of the EU or not.UK must be let with Washington, it’s not possible to change the British conservatorism anyway. Ukraine and Moldova should be supported by all the actual members to follow a democratic, anticorruption view in public administration., in order to become members themselves as soon as possible. Of course, along with the Balcanic countries and Georgia.

  220. Salvador

    Catalonia, Scotland and Basque Country

  221. Philippe Bastos

    Por mim a EUROPA j acabou h muito tempo s entra lixo e mais lixo. J agora a Sria tb e o Qunia. O Mali

  222. Leo Vlaming

    If Norway or Switzerland want to join (unlikely) they should be next. No other countries should be admitted in the next 20 years.

  223. Armand Koca

    HEALTH and EDUCATION have complex problems :( Lying, theft, prostitution, trafficking, murder :( the lack of money, the lack of drinking water, the lack of electricity, the lack of old original documents, and sale of every moral value, :( causing DESTRUCTION and DEATH of the INDIVIDUAL, SOCIETY and NATURE , and it must STOP here and now :(

    • Nina

      Turkey IS NOT part of EU ! LOL

  224. Mariana de Almeida

    If Iceland wants to join, we should get on with that process. Other than that, I think we have enough on our plate for years to come… So let’s not add to our problems =P

  225. Sindi Duka

    The VALUES countries !!! And you could find Values in every corner of the world! I think the Balcan country’s need a chance to share their positive sides, to believe the future will be better! They have already paid a lot for the decisions of the “Strongest”!! Before judging and being racist lets give all nations something important —-> HOPE!!

  226. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    I am in favor of a European nations

  227. Spaniardfbm

    Expansion to any country that promotes free movement of persons, capital, goods and services; freedom of stablishmen; democracy and respect of human rights… Any country with this background and shared borders. The Economy has no “natural” frontiers, so, right now, the limits to the candidates to join the EU as a supranational integration experiment are South Africa and China.

  228. CHRISTOS KARLETTIDES

    is very substantial only if it is the same of other members working towards the same goal, is it a global Union?
    No it has the mask but not the juice for all and thus cannot accomplish the purpose of the that it was conducted for

  229. Aija Kukule

    Serbia in EU? – Bad idea, very bad… It is enough with Greece, like it is today (I mean pro-russian actions), as well we have such stupid fractions in European Parliament and European Commission, who are trying to destroy EU from inside, so one more whole country full of ‘putinoids’ (not all, of course) – it is too much!

  230. MiL Gov

    Serbia is the next logical EU member

  231. saba

    India should join(if possible) because their currency is very strong.

  232. aren

    States that will join European Union: Caucasian Nations (Exception: Russia and Azerbaijan). States that are independent that will join the EU: Kosovo.

  233. Omar Parreira

    Georgia and Moldova are likely candidates. They will prosper from membership and the Union will benefit form having these two countries as member states. Moreover giving Georgia EU membership could help towards resolving the conflict in the areas of Abkhazia and South Osettia currently under Russian occupation.

  234. aaaa

    in this moment switzerland,norway,iceland. after 2020 serbia, macedonia, montenegro.

  235. Nicolas Meyrath

    What surprises me most is the problem Greece has with FYROM. The province of Luxembourg in Belgium (a one-time part of Lux. until 1839 !!) does not seem to cause any ill feeling among the population of the “petite Grande Duché de Luxembourg”. Neither is the opposite the case.
    Alexander the Great originated from Macedonia. I think the Greeks should rather be proud of the fact that there exists a Country bearing the name of one of their Provinces. Perhaps they dislike the fact that Macedonian is a Slavic language nowadays and uses a Cyrillic alphabet? Some Macedonians do however understand Greek, even nowadays. I think one should go the bottom of this debate before forcing anything on either the Greeks or the Macedonians. Perhaps some adequate PR will speed up the process of understanding…..

  236. Dan R.

    Anyone, but Ukraine! Obviously, Europe cannot to subsidize it endlessly. Most likely everyone understand quite well that full EU membership for Ukraine is still a long way ahead, but Kiev continues to press now Brussels to grant Ukraine more and more preferences on the way towards it
    http://i.imgur.com/LnBr2iH.png
    In my opinion Ukrainian officials must stop demanding from Brussels that “integration mechanisms should be used more actively towards Ukraine now”. The problem with Ukraine is that it is too slow in transforming its institutions, economy and society that would allow them to be fully compatible with EU institutions and practices. In this case some “individual road map of European integration process for Ukraine” puts the EU full membership for this country on the back burner!

  237. Nina

    EU gives the best to support Serbia in way to EU. It means EU works much more then Serbia about this question. About Kosovo sovereignty, almost every state in EU has much greater problem with prats which want to be Independent. Srbia is very important for EU, then every other country.

  238. Marsel

    i see many people talking so wrong about Kosovo , lombardia was and is full of italians was land of ethnic italians so doesnt need to separate from italy …. kosovo was albanian land full with ethnic albanians and albanians there had minimum of rights cuz serbs was criminals …. dear people its like with russia when it was soviet union … imagine russia would invade germany or any other country and calling it russian land …. what would your grand childrens do after 100 years … they would accept russian regime cuz is nice with them …. nobody would accept it so please dont dream anymore and talking only sh*t things in here for something u dont know about …. and as for topic i think Albania is the other state or country who should join EU … :)

  239. George Yiannitsiotis

    There are no territorial disputes over Aegean islands between Greece and Turkey. The borders between the two coutries have been settled clearly by two international agreements:
    1. The Treaty of Lausane (1923) that put an end to the 10years war that torn apart the remnants of the Ottoman Empire
    2. The Ankara Protocol between Turkey and Italy (1932) regarding the Dodekanissos archipelago; Greece, as successor state, follows the provisions of this Protocol; Turkey attempted to violate it in Jan 30-31, 1996 occupying for a couple of hours the west rocky island Ymia.
    3. The International Law of the Sea, especially its provisions regarding territorial waters and exclusive economic zones.

    Regarding Cyprus, Turkey invaded the island in 1974 and occupied militarily the northern part. Since the late 1970s started to move settlers from Turkey to the island in order to consolidate its domination on the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus to the expense of local population. The European Union does not recognize this as legitimate action and considers the occupied territories as part of the Republic of Cyprus where the European Legislation is pending.

  240. Somebody

    Yes, the Macedonian state and national/ethnic identity, as well as the Macedonian language, are simply a large-scale project of the Communist Party of former Yugoslavia and that is well known. But try telling that to Macedonians…

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