Turkey No Longer Needs EU Membership–Thankfully

Turkey is now the fastest growing economy in Europe, and also one of the most stable countries. A growing number of influential people are now saying that EU membership could be more of a curse than a gift. Importantly, business and property investors are no longer looking at the EU hurdles as a hurdle to investment.

This is good, because Turkey is still struggling to make headway with its accession negotiations, and if it fails to open up a new chapter in the accession talks very soon then it will have been one complete year with no progress. Turkey has vowed to continue with the talks but is hoping that the EU will make some sort of gesture towards them to break the impasse.

Since the talks began in 2005 Turkey has opened just 13 of 35 the policy chapters. It remains impossible for the country to open eight of the chapters as they are frozen as a sanction to Turkey’s refusal to open its ports to the Greek Cypriots. France has also blocked several other chapters as it has been extremely vocal in its opposition to Turkey joining the EU.

Although talks are ongoing between Cyprus’ Greek and Turkish communities in an attempt to end the 36-year-old dispute, Ankara doesn’t hold out much hope, and some diplomats feel that the Greek Cypriots have been hampering efforts to resolve issues.

There are just three chapters that don’t have any political ramifications which are available for negotiation at the moment which are competition, social policy and public procurement. These three subjects are considered some of the most difficult to negotiate and for that reason are usually left to the end of the accession process. Turkey is beginning to feel as if there is little point in changing so many laws when membership may still be refused at the end of the process.

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