The European Union must be ready to admit new member states by 2030, European Council President Charles Michel told a forum in the Slovenian lake resort of Bled on Monday, APA reports citing Reuters.
"I believe we must be ready by 2030 to enlarge," Michel said. "This is ambitious, but necessary. It shows that we are serious."
The six Western Balkan states - Albania, Bosnia, Kosovo Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia - are at different stages in the process of joining the bloc.
Last year Moldova and Ukraine were given candidate status. Georgia is waiting to receive that status as well.
Michel said that, in order to join the bloc, future member states would have to implement reforms to ensure independent judiciary, fight organised crime and corruption and align their foreign policy with EU member states.
He urged all aspirants to resolve their bilateral conflicts before they join the European Union.
Michel said that the EU would need to implement some reforms as well to be ready for enlargement.