49th COSAC Conference of Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the EU, Dublin 23-25 June 2013.
Intervention by Atis Lejiņš in debate on EU enlargement and neighborhood policy.
Enlargement is taking place in a dramatically changing world where weare reminded every day of the emerging new geopolitics.
1. That even big states in the EU are small compared to China, India, and perhaps, further down the line, Brazil. We will need to hang together, or we will each hang separately. Hence it would be agreat mistake for Great Britain to leave the EU, i.e. de-enlarge the EU and thereby diminish also herself.
2. We continue to struggle with the concept of „empire overstretch”. Though the EU is not an empire, we do have to be honest with ourselves and work with this concept – we cannot ignore it! At the same time keeping in mind the eventual inclusion of the remaining Balkans into the European Union.