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Wednesday, October 06, 2004
Business in Romania blog
A very tough article about Romania's struggle to join the EU in 2007. Knowing also that Mr. Nastase and Mr. Geoana went to Brussels to discuss with the EU leaders before the country report will be issued, it makes me believe that some part of the article below might be true.

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(SOURCE: EUpolitix.com)

Romania is a "rotten apple" and Bucharest's EU membership will be opposed in the European Parliament, Liberal MEPs warned on Tuesday.

The European Commission is set to give Romania the go-ahead for EU entry by 2007 but MEPs in the parliament's third largest political group are urging a halt.

Bucharest is struggling to implement EU required justice reforms on time – changes UK Liberal Democrat Chris Davies argues are fundamental.

"Decision day is drawing near and everyone is starting to realise that the issues can no longer be swept under the carpet," he said.

"Values must be maintained, and there is a risk that we could tip the balance by letting in a still rotten apple."

Davies suggests that unfinished business to clean-up Romania's judicial system and public administration may even make Bucharest more unsuitable than Turkey to join the EU's exclusive club.

"The pressure for reform must be maintained, and the EU negotiating process is the only effective means by which this can be achieved. If a political agreement allows Romania to join the EU in 2007 the fundamental problems of that country may never be properly addressed," he said.

"It's ironic, but Turkey may even now be in a better state to join the EU than Romania is at the end of the negotiating process."

Ankara has yet to be given the green light to even begin EU entry talks, with Turkey's membership still decades away and highly controversial in Germany, Austria and France.

Liberal MEPs will move to block Romania's EU membership in a non-binding parliament vote later this year.

Corruption, human rights abuses and infringements of press freedom will top the charge sheet.

"Romania suffers from endemic problems of corruption, lacks an independent judiciary, has an inadequate free press, and has not halted torture carried out by police officers," said Liberal justice spokesman Sarah Ludford.

"Laws are being changed but the country has no mechanism to make them work in practice. The country does not yet comply with the EU's criteria for human rights and democracy, and does not appear likely to do so within the next three years."

Posted by Mihai Botea : 10/06/2004 11:04:00 am Turkey nearer EU entry than Romania !?
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