In an interview with Deutsche Welle, European Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn said that 2025 is a realistic date for the admission of new members from the Balkans, but only if the criteria are met.
“The date 2025 is indicative, but if the implementation of reforms is intensified, then it is quite realistic. However, all criteria for membership must be met before, and there is no shortcuts. The motto is “quality before speed,” says Hahn.
In his interview, he once again welcomed the vote on the constitutional changes in the Macedonian Parliament.
“I am grateful to all the MPs who fulfilled the responsibility and put the interests of the state in front of those of the party. This is especially true for MPs from the opposition who voted against the party line and faced the consequences, that is, exclusion from the party,” Hahn said.
He is confident that the Prespa Agreement will be voted in Greece and says this deal will send an important signal of reconciliation to the entire region.
“This could have a dynamic effect in resolving the dispute between Serbia and Kosovo and lead to a breakthrough in the accession of the Western Balkans. For EU member states, accession to the EU makes sense only if all six countries can join and the solution in FYROM makes this scenario entirely more likely,” said Hahn, adding that Macedonia’s progress has created an atmosphere of “positive competition”.