European Commission's Directorate-General for Enlargement
For half a century, the European Union has pursued ever-deeper integration while taking in new members. Most of the time, the two processes took place in parallel. A growing membership has been part of the development of European integration right from the start. Today's EU, with 27 Member States and a population of close to 500 million people, is much safer, more prosperous, stronger and more influential than the original European Economic Community of 50 years ago, with its 6 members and population of less than 200 million.
Now, the EU, a community of values based on peace and freedom, democracy and the rule of law, as well as tolerance and solidarity is the world's largest economic zone. The wider internal market and new economic opportunities have increased Europeans' prosperity and competitiveness.
The governments of the EU Member States, coming together in the European Council, have agreed to extend the EU perspective to countries in South East Europe - Croatia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo under UN Security Council Resolution 1244 and Turkey. Membership will only happen when the necessary requirements are met. A gradual and carefully managed enlargement process creates a win-win situation for all countries concerned.
This project "Training in Public Procurement in Western Balkans and Turkey" forms part of the above mentioned Enlargement Strategy.
For more information on elargement and the work of the European Commission on this theme, please visit the website of the European Commission/DG Enlargement by clinking here.