Foreign Minister Zaharieva: EU Enlargement Policy Is in Interest of Both Candidate and Member States

January 14 (BTA) - The policy of EU enlargement is in the
 common interest of both the countries aspiring for accession
and those that are already members of the Union, Bulgarian
Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva said here Tuesday. She was
speaking at a discussion on the Croatian EU Council Presidency,
which began on January 1 this year.

There are improvements that can be made in the accession
negotiation framework, but it is also possible for the Council
to decide to launch negotiations with North Macedonia and
Albania while consultations are being held on the new framework.
 One does not preclude the other, Zaharieva said.

Reforms are vital, above all for the public in these countries.
This does not mean, however, that the endorsement of the new
negotiation framework should be used as a cause to put off the
launch of accession negotiations with countries that both the
European Commission and part of the Member States agree are
ready to launch such, Zaharieva argued.

As part of the discussion, Croatian Ambassador to Bulgaria Jasna
 Ognjanovac presented the priorities on which her country will
focus during its six-month rotational presidency.

The priorities of the Croatian EU Council Presidency are
subordinate to its motto, "A Strong Europe in a World of
Challenges", and are divided into four areas:  "A Europe that
Develops",  "A Europe that Connects", "A Europe that Protects",
and "An Influential Europe".

The discussion was organized by the Croatian Embassy in Sofia
and PanEuropa Bulgaria with the cooperation of the European
Commission Representation in Bulgaria and the local chapter of
the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. /RY/BR

Source: Sofia