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The Future of EU Enlargement


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Speaker(s): Dimitar Bechev, Lawrence Meredith, John Peet, Professor Robert Cooper
Chair: Dr Piers Ludlow

Recorded on 26 November 2013 in Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House.

Enlargement is widely hailed as the EU’s most successful policy, largely responsible for the successful transition from dictatorship to democracy first in Southern Europe, then in Central and Eastern Europe after the end of the Cold War. Yet forty years after the first enlargement, which saw the UK join the European Community, confidence in the European project seems to be at an all-time low. From enlargement fatigue within the EU to Russian overtures to Eastern European states and the fading prospects of Turkish accession, enlargement faces daunting challenges. In the context of the ongoing economic and political crises in the EU, we may well ask: Is EU Enlargement in crisis?

Dimitar Bechev is a senior policy fellow and head of Sofia office of the European Council for Foreign Relations.

Robert Cooper is a visiting professor at LSE IDEAS.

Lawrence Meredith is head of strategy and policy at the Directorate General for Enlargement at the European Commission.

John Peet is Europe editor at The Economist. Before joining The Economist he was a civil servant, working for the Treasury and the Foreign Office from 1976 to 1986.

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