Turkey has been an official candidate at the Helsinki summit of the European Council since December 10, 1999, in order to obtain the membership in the European Union. Negotiations began on October 3, 2005, and are expected to continue for at least several years. During the same time, the debate on the legitimacy of this accession began. Indeed, to be a full-fledged member of the EU, a country has to fulfil many criteria as established by the European Council which are as follows:
-Stability of institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights and respect for protection of minorities;
-The existence of a functioning market economy as well as the capacity to cope with competitive pressure and market forces within the EU;
-The ability to take on the obligations of membership including adherence to the aims of political, economic and monetary union.
With regard to the opposition to this entry, it was signalled by the EU that Turkey must remedy all its limitations before starting the negotiations.
Moreover, the EU membership could pose some challenges as well as opportunities in the foreign policy domain, because Europe has to be actively involved in this region, and it will imply that the EU might run a serious risk in involving new political and institutional problems. Moreover, it was also noticed that Turkey might become an additional responsibility.
Nevertheless, Turkey has an undeniable chance in accessingthe European Union, from a geopolitical and a geostrategic standpoint: its central location in Eurasia, its intermediary position between Occidental culture and Middle East, its traditional foreign policy are many advantages that are put forward by European analysts. Turkey is a real oriental guardian for European security.
On both sides, we must consider that if Turkey becomes a European member, this membership will add to the European Union and become a more important power at the regional and world-wide level. Turkey could be a stabilizing factor in this region and increase the role of the European Union.
[...] EU still represents half of the Turkish exports and imports, thanks to the Customs Union agreement between Turkey and the EU which came into effect on December This agreement allowed the Turkish economy to be opened without disruption. Since January Turkey had applied the same customs duty as of EU with other countries. This example shows the particularity of this kind of customs agreement. Turkey applies some measures in which its government is not involved. This customs agreement includes most of the goods and merchandise, except for agricultural goods. In the agriculture sector, most of European members are sceptical of the CAP and its budget if Turkey integrates into the EU in the future. [...]
[...] In case of integration of Turkey, the EU will become the Bosporus' master. This can help EU to dominate the borders and the strategic points of Europe. Source : http://www.wikipedia.org/ Another positive aspect of the Turkish location is that the country owns an oil pipeline called the B.T.C pipeline (Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline). It is the second longest oil pipeline in the world and that could bring more autonomy to the EU in the area of acquisition of energy Geopolitical aspect of Turkey Turkey had always experienced complicated relations with its neighbors. [...]
[...] Therefore, if Turkey integrates into the EU, it would mean that EU will have to deal with conflicts arising from such territorial politics Political stability Turkey is a parliamentary representative democracy. Since its foundation as a republic in 1923, Turkey has developed a strong tradition of secularism. The head of state is the President of the Republic who is elected for a seven-year term by the Parliament. The current President, Ahmet Necdet Sezer, was elected on May after having served as the President of the Constitutional Court. [...]
[...] III) Solutions to the problems Benefits for the EU in this membership The main advantage that this membership could bring to the EU is obviously the strategic location of Turkey. Indeed, as we saw previously, Turkey is the bridge between Europe and Asia. The interest of the EU is double-sided: to get almost a full control of its border and of the main commercial roads in Europe. Moreover, that would mean the acquisition of the second most important pipeline and, therefore, more autonomy in terms of energy. [...]
[...] Turkey could be a stabilizing factor in this region and increase the role of the European Union. In this essay, we will point out the different benefits and disadvantages of this accession. We will try to examine from the point of view of existing members of the European Union, and the extent to which the benefits of Turkish membership of the EU would outweigh the disadvantages. Turkey in general Presentation of Turkey ECONOMY OF TURKEY International WTO, OECD, ECO, agreements customs union with EU Statistics GDP PPP $ 612.3 billion (17th) GDP growth rate (2005 est.) GDP per capita (PPP) $8,200 (2005 est.) GDP composition by agriculture: sector industry: services: (2005 est.) Inflation (2005 est.) Population below 20% (2002) poverty line Labor force 24.7 million (2005) Labor force by agriculture: occupation industry: services: (3rd qtr. [...]
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