The European Union Council agreed on Monday to apply the revised enlargement methodology to the accession negotiations with Montenegro and Serbia after both candidate countries expressed their acceptance.
The Council said the changes would be accommodated within the existing negotiating frameworks with Montenegro and Serbia during the next Intergovernmental Conferences.
„The European Union and its Member States have consistently expressed their unequivocal support for the European perspective of the Western Balkans. This firm, merit-based prospect of full EU membership for the Western Balkans is in the Union’s own political, security and economic interests,“ the Council’s press release said.
It added that „a credible accession perspective is the key driver of transformation in the region and enhancing the opportunities for our collective security and prosperity. It is a key tool to promote democracy, the rule of law and respect for fundamental rights, which are also the main engines of economic development, social integration and the essential anchor for fostering regional reconciliation and stability. Maintaining and enhancing this policy is indispensable for the EU’s credibility, for the EU’s success and the EU’s influence in the region and beyond.“
The statement adds the enhancement of the accession process of Montenegro and Serbia focuses on stronger fundamental reforms, stronger political steer, an increased dynamism, and the improvement of the process’ predictability.