Eastern & Central Europe
Latest news about eastern and central Europe and EU enlargement. Since it was founded in 1958, the EU has regularly accepted new member countries. Each applicant country must meet certain requirements before membership is permitted. Regular enlargements have seen the EU grow from its original 6 founding members to 28 in 2013. Any country that satisfies the conditions for enlargement can apply to be a candidate. The European Commission, at the request of the European Council, assesses the applicant?s ability to meet the conditions of membership. If the opinion is positive and the Council agrees a negotiating mandate, discussions are formally opened between the applicant and the EU.
At the start of 2013, five countries had been accepted as EU candidate countries: Iceland, Montenegro, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Turkey. Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo (under UN Security Resolution 1244) have the status of potential candidates.
EU states back visa-free travel for Georgians
28 Feb 2017 at 9:41am
Georgian citizens with a biometric passport who travel to the EU for up to 90 days for business, tourist or family purposes will no longer need a visa after EU states agreed a regulation on visa liberalisation.
Russian pork ban illegal, WTO confirms
27 Feb 2017 at 1:25pm
Russia's 2014 import ban on live pigs, pork and other pig products from the European Union violates international trade rules, the World Trade organization's Appellate Body confirmed on Friday.
Migration and future of the EU on summit agenda
3 Feb 2017 at 2:04am
EU leaders meet for an informal summit in Malta Friday, with two items on their agenda: how to stem the flow of migrants, particularly from Libya, and to get down to mapping a future for Europe after Brexit.
Russian import duties on German, Italian vans illegal, rules WTO
30 Jan 2017 at 9:32am
Anti-dumping duties on vans imported from Italy and Germany, introduced by Russia in 2013, were declared illegal by a World Trade Organization panel saying the duties hindered exports of the vehicles.
Bulgaria, Romania still have work to do on corruption
26 Jan 2017 at 1:10pm
The fight against corruption and organised crime in Romania and Bulgaria still has some way to go, the EU Commission said in a report on judicial reform and the fight against corruption in the countries.
The EU's role in the Cyprus Settlement Process
12 Jan 2017 at 11:24am
The EU's delegation arrived in Geneva on 12 January for the Cyprus settlement Conference. A comprehensive settlement is seen as being beneficial for Cyprus and for the EU, as well as for the wider security and stability of the region.
Malta's unique role in pivotal year for the EU
12 Jan 2017 at 11:09am
European Union leaders visited Malta Wednesday to mark the launch of the first Maltese EU presidency, as it takes on a pivotal role in Europe's political development during a historic time for the EU.
Malta takes over EU presidency for the first time
10 Jan 2017 at 3:56pm
The small island of Malta took over the EU presidency on 1 January, facing the challenges of Brexit and important elections in France, Germany and the Netherlands.
Aarhus and Pafos are 2017 European Capitals of Culture
4 Jan 2017 at 3:16pm
The Danish and Cypriot cities of Aarhus and Pafos will hold the title of European Capital of Culture - one of the most popular EU projects for the year 2017.
EU reaffirms strong support for Ukraine
19 Dec 2016 at 3:57pm
The EU reaffirmed its support for Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity Monday, reiterating its refusal to recognise the "illegal annexation of Crimea and Sebastopol" by the Russian Federation.
EU formally extends sanctions against Russia
19 Dec 2016 at 3:56pm
The European Union prolonged economic sanctions targeting specific sectors of the Russian economy by a further six months on Monday, continuing its response to the crisis in Ukraine.
EU pledges support to Ukraine at summit
24 Nov 2016 at 1:48pm
EU leaders gave Ukraine's president Petro Poroshenko full support at a summit Thursday at which they cemented a deal on visa-free travel and praised the country's reform effort.
EU Parliament calls for freeze on Turkey membership talks
24 Nov 2016 at 9:40am
The European Parliament called Thursday for a temporary freeze on EU accession talks with Turkey until "disproportionate repressive measures" under the country's state of emergency are lifted.
EU states agree visa-free travel for Ukraine in principle
21 Nov 2016 at 9:52am
European Union states agreed Thursday the principle of short-term visa-free travel for Ukrainians to the EU, just days before an EU-Ukraine summit in Brussels.
Turkey 'moving away from the EU': enlargement report
10 Nov 2016 at 2:22am
Turkey is moving away from the EU, the Commission warns in its annual assessment of potential EU members' progress in implementing political and economic reforms.