Level crossing in Ghimeş (Gyimes), Romania. Photo: Alan Grant
Level crossing in Ghimeş (Gyimes), Romania. Photo: Alan Grant

General Reading

  • Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, "Europeanisation without Decommunization: a case of elite conversion", in: David Phinnemore (ed), The EU & Romania. Accession and Beyond, Federal Trust for Education and Research, 2006, pp. 17-28. Working paper version published by the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Role of Law / Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies of Stanford University.
  • Geoffrey Pridham, "Unfinished Business? Eastern Enlargement and Democratic Conditionality", Fride, Working paper 36, April 2007.

EU monitoring reports

A collection of all official reports on Romania prepared by DG Enlargement, including the "opinion" on Romania's application in 1997; all regular reports; the monitoring reports after the closing of negotiations; and the reports prepared under the co-operation and verification mechanism after accession:

Key EU strategy documents

The strategy documents on the enlargement process produced by the European Commission relevant for Romania. While most cover all accession countries of the 5th enlargement round, a few Commission strategy documents are related specifically to Romania and Bulgaria (after it become clear that the two would not join the EU alongside the other accession countries in 2004).

Contractual Relations

The major agreements between Romania and the EU during the accession process, from the Europe Agreement and the Accession Partnerships to the Accession Treaty:

Key European Council conclusions

Three European Council decisions were crucial for Romania. The 1997 Luxembourg summit launched the accession process for the ten East European former communist countries, including Romania (although the country was considered – together with Bulgaria – as lagging considerably behind the other post-communist states). The Helsinki European Council, held in 1999, opened accession negotiations with Romania, along with Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta and Slovakia. The December 2004 Brussels European Council confirmed the conclusion of negotiations with Romania.

Pre-accession funds and EU funds

EU funds are a crucial component of the EU's soft power in the accession process. For a comprehensive collection of annual reports on the EU's pre-accession funds, click here; and for annual reports on structural funds and cohesion funds prepared by the European Commission, click here. A short list of articles on EU funds follows below.

  • Romanian Academic Society (SAR), "The Absorption of EU Funds. A Measure of Capacity in the Administration and the Private Sector", in: Policy Warning Report/Annual Report and Forecast 2006.
  • Guillaume Durand and Antonio Missiroli, Absorption capacity: old wine in new bottles?, European Policy Centre (EPC), Policy Brief, September 2006.
  • David Allen, "Cohesion and the Structural Funds. Competing Pressures for Reform?", in: Helen Wallace, William Wallace, and Mark A. Pollack (eds), Policy-Making in the European Union. Fifth Edition, Oxford Univ. Press, 2005, pp. 213-241.
  • Yves Hervé and Robert Holzmann, Fiscal Transfers and Economic Convergence in the EU: An Analysis of Absorption Problems and an Evaluation of the Literature, Nomos, 1998.

Shadows of the past

Romania's communist regime was arguably the most brutal of the Soviet satellite states. The notorious Securitate kept dissenters in permanent fear and undermined the emergence of organised opposition groups better and more ruthlessly than most of their analogues across the Soviet bloc. While a new generation of Romanians no longer bears the scars of the pre-1989 regime, the shadows of the communist legacy are still visible.