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14 Sep 2017

Romania and Bulgaria to Join the Schengen Area ‘immediately’ and Western Balkan to have a better integration prospect– said Juncker

Juncker Calls for Swift Inclusion of Bulgaria, Romania in Schengen ZoneProvoked by the Brexit events, the President of the European Commission (EC) Jean-Claude Juncker in his annual speech about the situation of the EU this Wednesday, has called for the Romania and Bulgaria to be immediately added to the Schengen visa-free travel zone, for Croatia to get the full membership in the Schengen zone after filling the criteria, and for a Western Balkan to be given better membership chances.

To recall, a decade has passed since the membership of the Romania and Bulgaria into the European Union, and earlier this year Croatia was added to the Schengen Information System (SIS).

The president in his talking asked for gathering a special summit with the EU countries in Romania, once the UK detaches from the EU on March 2019 – where his major proposal was to change the leadership of the EU, by unifying two existing top presidential posts of the EU, into a single one: that of the European Commission and of the European Council. Agreeing to what he declared, this step forward would support the European Union, as to unify countries and its citizens.

Today, the EU has five (5) presidencies: the Commission, the Council, the Parliament, the European Central Bank and the Eurogroup, and the Juncker’s idea is to reduce them into three (3). The accountability for the Eurozone, according to him, would have to be on the Vice-president of the European Commission who would act as a Minister of Economics and Finance.

Other than that, he suggested the application of the Euro amongst all the EU members through a new “euro-accession instrument” and the establishment of a new program for technical and financial support.

Problems and issues brought to the discussion in his speech were also the dual food standard  in the East Europe, the independence of the national courts, completion of the banking union, adoption of “pillar of social rights”-for the protection of the workers and pensioners and for unification of standards, the agreements of the EU with Australia and New Zeland, Mexico and South America, the election of members of the European Parliament by Trans-European Lists – for more democratic elections of the parliament.

Fundamental proposals of the Juncker captured the attention of many, where Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen declared openly his disapproval with unification of the post. Financial and economic proposals were also in opposing with the views of the President of France Emmanuel Macron.

While, some others pro-EU listeners considered this as sharp and progressive. Yet, we need to see which of these proposals are to be ratified or rejected in the future.

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