Rethinking & Reshaping: EU Enlargement in times of war

Russia’s war against Ukraine has prompted European policymakers to rethink their approach to enlargement. What form does this new approach take, what are the opportunities for EU and candidate countries, and what is the European Political Community’s role?

, Berlin time (CET, UTC+1)
Venue: Collège des Bernardins, 20 Rue de Poissy, 75005 Paris
Event banner for the Rethinking & Reshaping conference

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forced policymakers across the continent to rethink how they could use EU enlargement policy to increase geopolitical leverage in Eastern Europe and keep Vladimir Putin at bay. A pivotal response has been the decision to grant candidate status and open EU accession negotiations with Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia. In the future, enlargement as a successful tool will require decisive and consensus-based action by the EU, as well as open communication and close cooperation with candidate countries throughout the accession process.

This discussion will explore the contours of the renewed approach to enlargement policy and the opportunities that enlargement offers to the EU and to candidate countries. It will also explore the European Political Community’s (EPC) role in facilitating the accession process and the potential synergies, opportunities, and challenges embedded in the dynamic relationship between the EPC and the EU enlargement process.

This event is co-organised by ECFR, the Lithuanian Embassy in Paris and Collège des Bernardins.


18:00 – 18:30 Welcome cocktail

18:30 – 18:40 Opening remarks: Antoine Arjakovsky, Research Director, Collège des Bernardins

18:40 – 19:00 Keynote addresses

  • Simonas Šatūnas, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lithuania
  • Cristina Gherasimov, Deputy Prime Minister for European Integration of Moldova

19:00 – 20:15 Expert discussion

  • Sergi Kapanadze, Former Vice-Speaker of Georgian Parliament, Former Deputy Foreign Minister of Georgia, Founder of GRASS and FactCheck
  • Nathalie Loiseau, Member of the European Parliament, Chair of the sub-committee on Security and Defense in the EP, former French minister for European affairs
  • Vessela Tcherneva, Deputy Director, ECFR
  • Ramūnas Vilpišauskas, Professor of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University; Jean Monnet Chair Professor
  • Volodymyr Yermolenko, Philosopher and Journalist, Chief editor – Ukraine World, President – PEN Ukraine

Chair: Marie Dumoulin, Director, Wider Europe Programme, ECFR

20:15 – 20:30 Questions and Answer