EU opens accession negotiations with Iceland

11:11, July 28, 2010      

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The first intergovernmental conference on the accession of Iceland to the European Union was held on Tuesday, formally opening accession negotiations with this country.

Belgium who holds the block's rotating presidency delivered the EU Negotiating Framework, which outlines the principles, substance and procedures guiding the negotiations with Iceland, paving the way for the upcoming accession talks between the two sides.

"The opening of accession negotiations today marks a new chapter in the history of our relations with Iceland. Accession should be a win-win situation for both sides," said Stefan Fle, Enlargement and European Neighborhood Policy Commissioner.

According to the commissioner, for Iceland, it will mean economic and monetary stability and a voice at the EU decision making table while for the EU, it will mean the block becomes stronger in dealing with the Arctic region and in areas such as renewable energy and climate change.

Before actual chapter by chapter negotiations start between Iceland and the EU member states, the "screening" process will provide an in-depth analysis of the EU rules and regulations with which the country must comply, the so-called acquis.

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