EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fuele urged the bloc on Tuesday (June 15th) to take further steps regarding Serbia’s bid. Belgrade submitted its formal EU membership application in late December. The European Commission (EC) is now awaiting a formal request from the Council of the EU to begin assessing the candidacy. But the EU foreign ministers reportedly prefer to delay the move, in another attempt to press Serbia to meet its commitments to The Hague war crimes tribunal. On Monday, the EU took the important step of unblocking the Stabilisation and Association Agreement. Ratification by all parliaments of the EU member states could take a year or two. Fuele says the EC could simultaneously work on preparations to award Serbia candidate status, which the country hopes will happen in 2011.
Fuele also said on Tuesday that the Council of the EU will offer its opinion in November on Albania’s application for candidate status, as well as Montenegro’s.