Much is being made of new countries joining the EU in the future and the impact that might have. Lets get some facts.
There are seven countries which may want to join, They are Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia (all formerly part of Yugoslavia), Iceland Albania and Turkey. Kosovo is also sometimes mentioned but at the moment it is not officially recognised as a country by the EU. To get detailed information on the progress of each of these countries have a look at ‘future EU members’
The country that most people express concern about is Turkey.
Applied for full membership: 1987
Confirmed as candidate: December 1999
Negotiations started: October 2005……. not exactly proceeding at a pace then.
There are 35 areas where agreements have to be reached before Turkey can be granted membership. These are called negotiating chapters. So far only 13 of Turkey’s 35 negotiating chapters have been opened, and only one has been completed….
The UK Foreign Office says it expects Turkey to be ready for membership “in a decade or so”.
Ready is one thing, joining is another. This is the bottom line – read this carefully!
After a candidate country and the EU complete their negotiations, all member states have to sign an accession treaty. It must then be approved by the European Parliament and be ratified by the parliaments of all existing EU states. Only then can a new country join the EU.
So I am not going to discuss what might happen if Turkey joins because they will only join if all the present members want them to. Of course if we have left the EU by that stage then we will not be able to have a say on whether Turkey joins or not. Also if as is likely we have by that stage, forged some trade agreements and also as a consequence entered into some deals allowing movement of EU citizens into and out of Britain, Then those who fear an influx of Turkish migrants could find that Turkish membership could let their population gain access to Britain without us having any say in it.
It may well be considered therefore in this respect that we are better in than out – then we can have our say and our vote.
To see other posts about our EU membership ( there are obviously 50 others, this being number 51) click EU membership summary And if you think any of them particularly relevant then please feel free to reblog or share them