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Avoiding the Trap of Another Paper Exercise: Why the Western Balkans Need a Human Development-centred EU Enlargement Model


The European Commission intends to publish a new methodology for the EU enlargement in the Western Balkans in early 2020. While the hope is that the new document will re-establish EU consensus on enlargement and revive its exhausted policy toward the Western Balkan region, there are already clear signs that it will all end up as another paper-pushing exercise. Without tackling the root causes of the current situation, notably the enduring socio-economic entropy and political backsliding in the Western Balkans, this new move will only diminish the leverage of the EU. What is needed is a human development-centred EU enlargement model for the Western Balkans.

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