French Ambassador pours cold water on hopes for speedy opening of EU accession talks

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French Ambassador pours cold water on hopes for speedy opening of EU accession talks
During his presentation of the priorities of the French presidency of the European Union, Ambassador Cyrille Baumbartner made it clear that Macedonia can’t expect the opening of EU accession talks in the foreseable time.

Baumgartner kept going to the major problems that the EU faces, such as the Covid pandemic, as well as political issues, including the French elections, to warn that other matters will be priority in the coming period. During the meeting of the National Council on Euro Integration, the Ambassador said that he understands why Macedonians are focusing on the date to open EU accession talks, but warned about the reality in Brussels.

France took over the rotating presidency of the European Council from Slovenia, which was an enthusiastic supporter of Balkan enlargement, but with limited resources. France itself blocked Macedonia from opening EU accession talks in 2019, and is currently nominally opposed to the Bulgarian veto, but not particularly outspoken against it.