The European Union's enlargement policy is based on established criteria and fair and rigorous conditionality.
Progress along the European path is an objective and merit-based process which depends on the concrete results achieved by each individual country, with the rule of law, justice and fundamental rights being an utmost priority. A credible enlargement perspective requires sustained efforts and irreversible reforms. The EU Enlargement is an investment in peace, security and stability in Europe: a prospect of EU membership has a powerful transformative effect on the partners in the process, embedding positive democratic, political, economic and societal change.
Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey are candidate countries.The European Council has decided to grant the status of candidate country to Ukraine and to the Republic of Moldova in June 2022.
Negotiations are held with each candidate country to determine their ability to apply EU legislation (acquis) and examine their possible request for transition periods.