Vienna – ESI at discussion panel on EU enlargement in the Western Balkans
ESI’s Gerald Knaus was invited to participate in the discussion panel: “EU Enlargement in the Western Balkans: Time to Get Real!” organised by the Federal Ministry Republic of Austria European and International Affairs and Friends of the Western Balkans.
In his intervention, Gerald presented ESI’s proposals for reforming the accession process and Single Market entry, focusing on merit-based access to the EU Single market for the six Western Balkans countries.
Furthermore, Gerald argued that the EU needs to make a credible proposal to gain the trust of Western Balkans countries and put them on the path to accession. He insisted that the best way to achieve this is offering them the Four Freedoms and Single market access.
Other panellists were Ambassador Johannes Eigner, Special Representative for the Western Balkans, Florian Bieber (Professor of History and Politics of Southeast Europe, Head of the Centre for Southeast Europe Studies, University of Graz), Richard Grieveson (Deputy Director at the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies), Hedvig Morvai (Director, Strategy and Europe at ERSTE Foundation), Milena Mihajlovic (Programme Director, European Policy Centre Belgrade) and Anna Vezyroglou (Deputy Head of Unit Western Balkans Policy and Regional Strategy, European Commission).