Macron proposes a new “European political community” parallel to the EU – Exit

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In a keynote address to the European Parliament on Monday, French President Emmanuel Macron proposed the creation of a new “European political community” that would run parallel to the European Union.

Macron’s proposal came in light of Ukraine’s demand for accelerated European Union membership which the French president said would take decades.

“Even if we gave them candidate status tomorrow, we all know perfectly well that the process to allow them to join would take several years, in truth probably several decades,” Macron said of Ukraine’s candidacy.

As an alternative, Macron proposed the creation of a parallel community that would include EU members, EU hopefuls (e.g. the Western Balkans) and even Britain.

“This new European organization would allow democratic European nations… to find a new space for political cooperation, security, cooperation in the fields of energy, transport, investment, infrastructure, movement of people “, described Macron.

France is among a group of countries that have been skeptical about further enlargement and its impact on European institutions, especially as the list of EU candidates grows.

With Russia’s aggression in Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia have expressed a desire to apply for EU membership, while in the Western Balkans the accession process has come to an abrupt halt.

Macron’s proposal echoes François Mitterrand’s project for a European Confederation after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

On December 31, 1989, Mitterrand called for the creation of a “European federation…associating all the States of [the continent] in a common and permanent organization of exchange, peace and security.

Mitterrand’s project never came to fruition and Macron seems ready to take over the legacy of his predecessor. Yet despite his lofty aspirations, Macron’s own plans remain opaque, as his speech to the European Parliament contained few practical details.

And while Macron’s speech was aimed at Ukraine, his insistence that the European Union not lower its tough membership standards is causing problems for the six Western Balkan countries, most of which are in the waiting room for decades, with little progress.

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