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EPP Local Dialogues

EU Enlargement as part of the Future of Europe: the views of cities and regions

  • 14.04.2022 10:30 am / 12:45 pm
  • Dubrovnik / Croatia

While the European Commission continues to issue its yearly reporting on the progress of the Western Balkan countries towards EU accession and European funding mechanisms for the region are maintained, the process of Enlargement has not seen real developments in the past years.

The reluctance of some EU member states on the one hand, and the inability of some candidate countries to maintain democratic standards and reforms, on the other, can be detrimental for the future of both the EU and the Western Balkans. The Russian invasion of Ukraine makes the need to reaffirming EU values in the neighborhood even more apparent.

At the same time, the bottom-up support for Enlargement from citizens and regional and local authorities is growing. Local and regional leaders contribute substantially to promoting European standards, values and practices in the enlargement countries through continuous engagement in structured dialogue with their counterparts in peer-to-peer cooperation and city diplomacy projects. Many European citizens who are active in the Conference on the Future of Europe are also in favour of speedier enlargement for the Western Balkans. Ideas for continued enlargement received a high number of endorsements by participants of the Conference’s digital platform.
In this context the need for a wider citizens’ dialogue and political leadership on enlargement becomes apparent in order to provide viable prospects for membership. This #EPPLocalDialogue dialogue is intended as a meeting point between the opinions of decision makers, experts and the ideas of citizens on the topic.


10:30 Opening remarks

Mato Franković, Mayor of Dubrovnik


10:45 Panel Debate

Moderator: Ivana Petrović, journalist

  • Nikola Dobroslavić, President of Dubrovnik-Neretva Region
  • Olgierd Geblewicz, EPP-Cor President, President of West Pomerania Region (Poland)
  • Sunčana Glavak, Member of the European Parliament
  • Franz Schausberger,Representative of Salzburg (video message)
  • Željko Turk, Mayor of Zaprešić
  • Danijel Marušić, Member of Brod-Posavina County


11:30 Q&A Session

12:30 Concluding remarks

Nikola Dobroslavić, President of Dubrovnik-Neretva Region

Apostolos Tzitzikostas, CoR President (video message)


Interpretation: HR, EN


#EPPLocalDialogue #WesternBalkans



You can follow the event via Facebook live.

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