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Slovakia and the eu

History of Slovakia's EU membership

Slovakia has been a full member of the European Union for twelve years. Its integration into European structures was conditional on major political and economic reforms.

The process of building closer relations between the Slovak Republic and the European Union began in October 1993 when the Association Agreements were signed. In 1995, after the National Council of the Slovak Republic and parliaments of the EU member countries ratified the Association Agreement, the then Prime Minister, Vladimír Mečiar, submitted the application for EU membership. The following years were marked by concerns and objections from the European Commission. These mostly related to the instability of Slovak institutions and insufficient democracy.

However, the parliamentary elections held in 1998 marked a turning point. The EU welcomed the election results, and the first foreign visit of the new Prime Minister, Mikuláš Dzurinda, was to Brussels. During the negotiations with the European Commission, Slovakia was represented by the then State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ján Figeľ.

At the Helsinki summit in 1999, Slovakia was invited to accession negotiations, and European integration became a priority of the new Slovak government. The integration process was accompanied by a number of political and economic changes. Reforms focused on economic issues and on the stabilisation of democratic institutions. The Slovak Republic's negotiations on EU accession were concluded at the Copenhagen summit in 2002, which set the final date for Slovakia and nine other countries to join the EU.

In April 2003, the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs approved the accession of ten countries, including Slovakia, to the European Union in 2004. Ten candidate countries formally signed the Treaty of Accession to the EU on 16 April 2003 in Athens. The Slovak Republic was represented by the President, Rudolf Schuster, and the Prime Minister, Mikuláš Dzurinda, who signed the Treaty. The Slovak Republic joined the European Union on 1 May 2004.

Slovakia's effort to become a member of the Schengen area was accomplished on 21 December 2007 when controls on the borders with Poland, the Czech Republic, Austria and Hungary were abolished. In preparation for this step, Slovakia faced the considerable challenge of securing the border with Ukraine, which became the eastern border of the whole European Community following the entry of Slovakia and other countries to the Schengen area in 2007.

In 2009, the Slovak Republic adopted the euro and became the sixteenth Member State in the euro area. Before the adoption of the common currency, it was especially important to meet the so-called Maastricht criteria.

From 1 July 2016 to 31 December 2016 Slovakia will hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first time in the country's history.

Latest news

3 November 2016
Joint debate on research and innovation in the Danube region
This morning, within the framework of the 5th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Danube Region (Danube Strategy), ministers and their representatives responsible for research and innovation, together with the European Commission, met to discuss how to coordinate investment activities in the field of research and how to prevent the brain drain from the region.
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28 October 2016
EU-Canada trade agreement: Council adopts decision to sign CETA
Brussels (28 October) - On 28 October, the Council adopted by written procedure a package of decisions on the comprehensive economic and trade agreement with Canada (CETA), including:
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27 October 2016
'Bratislava Agenda' – a new impetus for European industry
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26 October 2016
EU 2017 budget: Council cannot accept EP amendments
Brussels (26 October) - On 26 October 2016, the Council informed the European Parliament that it cannot accept all its amendments for the 2017 EU budget, adopted the same day.
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23 August 2016
Joint Statement: Ministerial Conference on the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Totalitarian Regimes
(Bratislava, 23 August 2016)
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12 July 2016
Speech by Foreign Minister M. Lajčák at the EP Committee AFET
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12 July 2016
Speech by Finance Minister P. Kažimír at the conference "Feasibility and Added Value of a European Unemployment Benefits Scheme"
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6 July 2016
Speech by Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico in the European Parliament
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7 October 2016
2 climate weeks: „small step for humanity, giant leap for Slovak Presidency“
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19 October 2016
Notice: Prime Minister Robert Fico to attend a summit of EU leaders in Brussels
The Slovak Prime Minister, Robert Fico, together with the Slovak Minister for Labour, Social Affairs and the Family, Ján Richter, will attend the Tripartite Social Summit and a regular session of the European Council in Brussels on 19-21 October 2016. On this occasion, Mr Fico will meet the prime ministers of the Visegrad Four countries, the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, and the leaders of fellow EU member states.
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17 October 2016
Notice: Slovak PM Robert Fico and Social Minister Ján Richter to participate in a Tripartite Social Summit in Brussels
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16 October 2016
Notice: EU trade ministers meet to discuss CETA between the EU and Canada
On Tuesday 18 October, Slovak Minister of Economy Peter Žiga will chair the trade segment of the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC Trade) in Luxembourg. The extraordinary meeting was called by the Presidency to discuss the comprehensive economic and trade agreement with Canada (CETA).
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16 October 2016
Notice: First ever Eastern Partnership meeting on climate and environment
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23 June 2016
Presidency glossary
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23 June 2016
Slovak Presidency Website eu2016.sk
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22 June 2016
Accreditation and registration
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5 May 2016
Presidency in Figures
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19 July 2016
Council conclusions on Venezuela
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19 July 2016
Council conclusions on EU strategy on China
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19 July 2016
Council conclusions on Turkey
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19 July 2016
EU priorities at the United Nations and the 71st UNGA
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