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Bildt: Sweden backs Balkans' EU push
Carl Bildt at a press conference in Kosovo on Nov. 8, 2011

Bildt: Sweden backs Balkans' EU push

Published: 10 Nov 2011 08:11 GMT+01:00
Updated: 10 Nov 2011 08:11 GMT+01:00

"Sweden is the country which is very supportive of the enlargement process as we think this is the best and the safest way for the prosperity and long-lasting stability of this region," Bildt said after talks with his Serbian counterpart Vuk Jeremic.

However he warned the aspiring countries that the reforms necessary for their European integration are an "ongoing process."

"This is not something to be solved in one goal or with one decision, it is a process that lasts," Bildt cautioned.

Jeremic said Belgrade was aware of "scepticism towards EU enlargement" but insisted Serbia would continue with the reforms necessary for European Union

integration.

"It is a long process and we should not have any ilusions it will be accelerated but the transformation of our society is in our best interest," Jeremic said.

Western Balkan countries include all former Yugoslavia's republics - Bosnia-Hercegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia, plus Slovenia which joined the EU in 2004, and Albania. They are in very different phases on their EU path.

The most advanced is Croatia, set to become the bloc's newest member in

2013.

Last month the European Commission proposed opening accession talks with Montenegro and awarding candidate status to Serbia under condition that Belgrade makes progress in normalizing ties with breakaway Kosovo.

EU leaders should decide on the recommendations at their December 9th summit.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

08:26 November 10, 2011 by fxrider
Why not just call Europe as EU. It will save recurrent administration costs. And then ask China to buy (invest in) debt ridden EU :)
15:22 November 10, 2011 by Scepticion
Politicians couldn't wait to expand fast enough without properly thinking through the consquences. This led to the current disaster. So, how about giving it a rest until you can fix the problems of the current countries. Or do you expect the new putative members will happily bail out Greece? I rather doubt it.
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