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News > EC recommends making Serbia EU candidate

EC recommends making Serbia EU candidate

A date for the start if membership negotiations "will depend on the dialogue with Kosovo", according to reports.

EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule told the European Parliament on Wednesday he expected the dialogue between Belgrade and Priština to resume soon.

The relations between Belgrade and Priština are still tense, but the EU expects the talks to resume, he stated.

"On the basis of the progress achieved in reforms, co-operation with the International Court Tribunal for ex-Yugoslavia, and regional reconciliation, I recommend granting Serbia Candidate Status on the understanding that Serbia re-engages in the dialogue with Kosovo and is moving swiftly to the implementation in good faith of agreements reached to date," he remarked.

"Furthermore, we recommend that accession negotiations be opened as soon as Serbia achieves further progress in meeting the one key priority we identify namely: further steps to normalize relations with Kosovo in line with the conditions of the Stabilization and Association Process," Fule noted.

"This is the only priority we set which in itself is a tribute to the reform efforts we have witnessed in Serbia over the last year in the area of judicial reform, rule of law and other areas intrinsically linked to the Copenhagen political criteria," he explained.

Concerning Kosovo, Fule said it had achieved limited progress, with corruption and organized crimes remaining as the chief challenges.

"While the integration of Kosovo Serbs has improved in the South, tensions in northern Kosovo have increased. It is of utmost importance that Kosovo launches a comprehensive agenda for the north," he pointed out.

The commissioner commended most of the countries who wish to join the EU on their progress in reaching the EU standards.

This was another important year for enlargement," he said.

The final decision on the recommendation will be made by the EU Council of Ministers in December.

Source: TANJUG