9.5 C
April 20, 2021

Guenter Verheugen: There is a false impression Romania and Bulgaria are EU’s ‘difficult children’

In an interview for the online edition of ‘Der Spiegel’ weekly, former EU Commissioner for Industry Guenter Verheugen challenges the scepticism about the EU enlargement and says the process has to continue, taking the example of the successful enlargement waves of 2004 and 2007, noting that false impression has been created that Romania and Bulgaria are the EU’s ‘difficult children’.

‘I would like German politicians to recognize the success of the two enlargement waves in 2004 and 2007. If anyone neglects to recognise positive results and prefers to give the example of the assumed difficult children Romania and Bulgaria – which is not even true – we shouldn’t be surprised about the emergence of suspicions regarding the new enlargement wave,’ Verheugen says. ‘They are too poor, we don’t want them because we will have to feed them after their accession – that’s a narrow and false argument. Reality is entirely different. All integration waves have involved countries that were lagging a lot behind existing EU states in terms of economic performance. Those countries have nonetheless bridged the divide exactly because they became members of the EU, which enhanced economic growth and created jobs even in Germany,’ Guenter Verheugen states.

According to Mediafax, which quoted the German weekly, Verheugen added that the scepticism about enlargement had to do ‘with the old belief that European integration was a West-European project into which Central and Eastern Europe could not be included. A new division line in Europe would be historically inadequate and also limited. Or perhaps you can explain to me why the Serbs are less European than the Irish or the Portuguese?’

Challenged by the journalists, the words of the former Brussels official depict an interesting reality: we welcome new members, the Union has satisfied its need of economically ‘occupying’ other countries.

‘The European Commission is the engine of European integration, the image of the Commission is still influenced by the belief that it is some bureaucratic tentacular monster whose intention is to regulate people’s lives. I have tried to put some distance between myself and that mentality. However, we have to realize that the things we say go through national filters. A bad habit has developed in some countries, especially Germany: ‘those people in Brussels’ are to blame for the things that go bad, Verheugen also says.

Related posts

Iohannis blame delays in the drafting of the budget bill by the Government : They don’t want to give money for investments


Basescu: USL missed Schengen entry. We need a competent Government

Nine O' Clock

PNL’s Predoiu announces criteria to stay at the foundation of his future “Snow White” Cabinet: integrity and professionalism

Nine O' Clock