Garčević Argues for New EU Enlargement Methodology

On September 22, 2021, Ambassador Vesko Garčević, Professor of the Practice of International Relations at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, took part in a conference hosted by the Foundation for Social Studies and Analysis (FAES) in Madrid during which he discussed the prospect of Western Balkan countries integration into the European Union (EU). 

Garčević was a panelist for a session titled “European Integration with or without Western Balkans,” which featured Ivan Vejvoda, Acting Rector of the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna and former Senior Vice President for Programs at the German Marshall Fund (USA), as well as Oliver Krliu, Ambassador of North Macedonia to Spain. Mira Milosevich, Senior Analyst for Russia and Eurasia at the Elcano Royal Institute moderated the panel.

In his remarks, Garčević argued for a new EU enlargement methodology. He stressed that the EU needs to overhaul the current enlargement process, which implies that a candidate country can only become an EU member when they meet criteria in all the areas. According to Garčević, an incremental or gradual enlargement that introduces incentives for aspiring countries can be a solution. This will allow a candidate country to integrate into the Union in areas where it meets EU standards, for example, economy and trade. In areas where further progress is needed, like rule of law, home affairs, and judiciary, candidate countries will be allowed to the EU once the standards are fulfilled.

A recording of the panel can be viewed below.

During his diplomatic career, Ambassador Vesko Garčević dealt with issues pertinent to European security and NATO for almost 14 years. In 2004, he was posted in Vienna to serve as Ambassador to Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. He had been a Montenegro’s Ambassador to NATO from 2010 until 2014 and served as Montenegro’s National Coordinator for NATO from 2015 until he joined the faculty at the Pardee School. Learn more about Ambassador Garčević on his faculty profile.