In an article published on 16 September, 2013 policy analyst Corina Stratulat and policy analyst as well as Balkan Civil Society Development Network BCSDN board member Gjergji Vurmo argue that the smooth handover of power, in combination with Albania’s recent strides to meet EU conditions, should help to reboot and upgrade the country’s relationship with the Union. To meet its end of the bargain, Brussels should now reciprocate by dovetailing the expected reward of ‘candidate status’ by the end of the year with a better calibrated conditionality for Albania. The article further explores the sticks and carrots within the context of this relationship. This leads the authors to conclude that the case of Albania highlights at present the fact that to keep the enlargement ball rolling, real engagement is needed both from the aspiring Balkan countries and the EU itself. They further conclude that the ‘carrot and stick’ policy remains a tried and tested approach and ask whether the Union hold up its end of the deal.
The full article is available here.