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European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)

Application for EU membership

European Commission - Enlargement - Application for EU membership

The Treaty on European Union (Article 49) lays down the conditions a candidate country must meet to become a member state: any European state which respects the common values of the Member States and undertake to promote them may apply to become a member of the Union. These values include human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities (Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union).

The application is submitted to the Council, while the European Parliament and national Parliaments are notified (see also Accession to the EU).

For more details, see the following sections on our website: