Positive decision on Iceland


The first meeting in General Affairs Council during the Swedish presidency. Exciting! The seatings in the room change every 6 months since the countries are in the order they are presidency. Since October 2006 we have moved closer and closer to the chair and now it is our turn!

I tried to spread a little Swedish meeting culture initially by starting on time – almost – and have most of the meeting in front of cameras. We started with a presentation of our priorities and then it became quite a long discussion on the Baltic Sea Strategy. It’s fun to see that there is such widespread support for the strategy among the member states. Many see the opportunity to deepen economic cooperation and to tackle the serious environmental situation as a real step forward in regional cooperation, entirely within the EU framework. We hope that the Baltic Sea Strategy could be adopted at our summit in October.

A longer discussion on Iceland’s membership application was closed with an overall agreement on sending it to the Commission for preparing a so-called avis. At the same time, we promise to return promptly to the Albanian application later this autumn. The conclusions also states the support for the Western Balkans’ “European perspective”.

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  1. […] European Council will grant Iceland candidate status and open negotiations (see Swedish minister Malmstrom’s blog as […]

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