‘EU enlargement beneficial’

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, May 2:

The 15-member delegation, which is currently in India on European Union (EU) enlargement issue, has said that the move will further open the doors for economic prospects across member states and other third world countries. According to a press statement issued here today, the delegation of the European Commission is for India, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka, which will further boost economic growth, as GDP of EU-25 will increase by five per cent compared to EU-15 GDP earlier, and create jobs in both old and new member states.

Ten countires of central, eastern and southern Europe (the Czech Republic, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia , Malta and Cyprus) formally joint the European Union (EU) from May 1. Irish president of the EU Philip McDonagh was quoted as saying that EU’s enlargement will not only mean the additon of 10 countries to the EU touching the lives of 450 million citizens across the 25 countires in one way or another, but it will also have an indirect impact across the world, especially in countries that are strong partners of the EU such as India.

“This is a history in the making” Francisco da Câmara Gomes was quoted as saying who is the heading the delegation of the European Commission to India. The EU which started as a group of six countries in the 1950s has through successive enlargements grown to 15, and now, 25 countries creating not only the world’s biggest trading bloc but also an unprecedented area of peace, stability and progress. The enlargement will strengthen the Union’s role in world affairs - in foreign and security policy, trade policy, and the other fields of global governance, says the statement. For third countries, an even larger market than before: with a population of almost 455 million and a GDP of around Euro 9712 billion, the enlarged EU will account for some 18 per cent of world trade, stated the release. The new member states are adopting the EU external tariff, which is in average lower than the one applied in most of them individually (3.6 per cent EU verses nine per cent in the 10 new countries). It is said that the current EU is already the largest single market in the world. Third countries will benefit from an increased single market, and a simplified access to EU states.