European Commission Evaluates Potential EU Members

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 1:55 pm (UTC-5)
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The European Union says Albania, Macedonia and Montenegro are well on their way to EU membership, while Serbia, Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina need to make more progress on reforms.

The European Commission — the executive arm of the EU — released its annual enlargement report Wednesday, summing up the economic, diplomatic and political situations of nations aspiring to join the group in the coming years.

The report gave Albania, Macedonia and Montenegro good marks on the progress of their reforms, although Montenegro was told to improve its work on rule-of-law issues.

It says Albania could be granted candidate country status after it completes key judicial and administrative reforms.

The commission says Serbia and Kosovo must make a “visible and sustainable” improvement in their relations in order to continue on a path toward EU membership, while Bosnia was cited as needing “more work” on such areas as improving functionality and efficiency of the government, and judicial reform.

Croatia — which is set to become a full EU member in July 2013 — was told to speed up its reforms.

The commission criticized Turkey, which for years has been negotiating to join the EU, saying it is increasingly worried about the country's record on human rights and freedom of speech.