Policy Memos

Slowly But Surely?: The European Neighborhood Policy as a New Framework for Transatlantic Integration

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In the aftermath of the April 2008 North Atlantic Treaty Organization summit, there is a need to conceptually rethink the Euro-Atlantic agenda in post-Soviet Eastern Europe and the Caucasus. The Bucharest summit confirmed NATO’s open-door policy yet still refused to extend a Membership Action Plan (MAP) to either aspiring candidate, Ukraine or Georgia. Grand agendas for Euro-Atlantic expansion were admittedly not on the table prior to the summit: due to the European Union’s refusal to grant membership prospects to any new aspirants, neither “the Baltic option,” a simultaneous enlargement of the EU and NATO, nor “the Polish option,” in which NATO expansion precedes and is understood to presage EU expansion, was possible. On the other hand, a “quasi-Turkish option,” by which the more advanced Eastern partners could be admitted into the Atlantic security zone in order to postpone ad infinitum their entry into the European prosperity zone, was conceivable, even if those partners failed to comply with all the criteria (Georgia) or lacked full popular support (Ukraine). [...]

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About the author

Director,The EU Eastern Neighbourhood and Russia Programme
Finnish Institute of International Affairs