During the last month, the European Union decided to block Albania and North Macedonia from starting membership talks. The decision came after the “Non” said by several countries including France and Spain, and it is considered by Senior EU official, like the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Junker, as a “grave historic mistake”1. The … Continue reading The EU stops the talks with the Western Balkans: what consequences?
November 9th marks the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. A watershed in European history, it paved the way for an ideal re-unification of the Continent, dismembered by the logic of the Cold War. Indeed, after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Central-Eastern Europe had progressively leaned towards accession to the European … Continue reading Directors’ Cut Ep.1 – A tale of two Europes: Divides, discrepancies and cleavages inside the European Union
The whole world welcomed the beginning of a new millennium with spectacular celebrations and new hopes. In people’s mind, the year 2000 meant a jump in the future, in which technological development would have reached new and undiscovered worlds. According to popular beliefs, what was about to start was the millennium of the end of … Continue reading The war on terror: the last drift before the 2004 EU eastward enlargement
During the last weekend, from Friday 23rd to Sunday 26th May, the citizens of the 28 Member States of the European Union voted for the renewal of the European Parliament. The 2019 European elections are characterized by a tough electoral campaign based mainly on issues such as immigration, nationalism and Euroscepticism. This has led most … Continue reading European Parliament Elections 2019: what future for the EU?
The Roma are the EU’s largest minority and one of the most discriminated group in the European block. Notwithstanding the Indian origins, the Roma settled in Romania during the XIV century. With the 2007 enlargement of the European Union, large shares of people migrated to Western Europe, becoming a crucial part of the society in … Continue reading The Roma in the European Union: the fragile fight against discrimination
The history of the European continent is a history of divisions and reunifications. In 1989 the fall of the Berlin Wall has reunified Europe after almost forty-five years. East Europe and West Europe, with the end of the Cold War divide, could finally get back what history stole from them. In 1990, the Czech President … Continue reading Fifteen years of membership: the complexities of the EU’s eastward enlargement
The Western Balkans Labor Market Trends 2019 report, published by the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw) and the World Bank Group, described the improving labor market and overall GDP growth of the Western Balkans. Albania, Montenegro and North Macedonia reported the strongest job growth in the Western Balkans. Most jobs in this region, … Continue reading Western Balkans Accession Assessment
After two years of negotiations, the Brexit drama between Brussels and London is coming to an end. The deadline to reach a final withdrawal agreement has been set for March 29, two years after the Prime Minister Theresa May has triggered article 50 in 2017. The international community is experiencing a troubled and unprecedented moment … Continue reading Brexit and the implications for Central Eastern Europe
Weeks of political and social unrest in Albania. The opposition parties have jointly organized protests in the streets of Tirana in front of the main institutional buildings, asking for the resignation of the Prime Minister Edi Rama and for early elections. On the other hand, the head of government has denied all accusations of links … Continue reading The Albanian Unrest: A new hurdle in the path of European integration?
The syndrome of the so called ‘enlargement fatigue’ outlined the last decade of debates on further enlargement of the European Union and, with the socio-political situation of the countries involved, limited the chance for opening the doors of the Union to the Western Balkans and fostering deeper engagement. The Balkan region, an integral part of Europe … Continue reading The challenges and the future of the EU’s Enlargement to the Western Balkans