December 22, 2023

The Future of EU Enlargement: Obstacles and Opportunities

At last week’s European Council summit, EU heads of state and government agreed to begin accession negotiations with Ukraine and Moldova as well as to grant candidate status to Georgia. These historic decisions demonstrate the new momentum in the European Union’s enlargement process following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has forced the bloc to think more strategically about integrating its neighbors to the east. But while enlargement may be back on the political agenda, there are many obstacles in its way, including the ongoing war in Ukraine, the need for substantial political reforms in candidate countries, and the need for the European Union to reform its own institutions to be able to welcome new members. As we look towards what is sure to be a long and difficult process, what are the true prospects for enlargement’s success, and what will need to happen before a new set of member states can join the European Union? To discuss all of this and more Veronica Anghel and Engjellushe Morina join Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Nick Lokker on this episode of Brussels Sprouts.

Veronica Anghel is a Lecturer at SAIS Europe and a Visiting Fellow in the Robert Schuman Center at the European University Institute.

Engjellushe Morina is a senior policy fellow with the Wider Europe Program at the European Council on Foreign Relations.

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