Key Dates

15 December 2022:  The leaders of the European Union unanimously decided to grant EU candidate status to Bosnia and Herzegovina

12 October 2022: European Commission assesses reforms in the Western Balkans and Türkiye and recommends candidate status for Bosnia and Herzegovina;

June 2022: The European Council affirms its readiness to grant the status of candidate country to Bosnia and Herzegovina and invites the European Commission to report on implementation of the 14 key priorities set out in its Opinion with special attention to those, which constitute a substantial set of reforms;

October 2020: The European Commission adopts an Economic & Investment Plan to support and bring the Western Balkans closer to the EU;

February 2020: Revised methodology, presented by the Commission, to drive forward the enlargement process with a stronger political steer and in a more credible, predictable, dynamic way;

December 2019: The EU Council adopts conclusions on the Commission’s Opinion, endorsing the 14 key priorities therein as the conditions for Bosnia and Herzegovina to fulfil in order to be recommended for the opening of accession negotiations;

29 May 2019: The European Commission adopts its Opinion on the membership application of Bosnia and Herzegovina, including 14 key priorities;

February 2018:

– Bosnia and Herzegovina’s authorities deliver to President Juncker and Commissioner Hahn the answers to the Questionnaire;

– The European Commission adopts its strategy for “A credible enlargement perspective for and enhanced EU engagement with the Western Balkans;

May 2018:  EU-Western Balkans Summits are relaunched starting with a Summit held in Sofia, during which leaders confirmed the European perspective of the region and set out a number of concrete actions to strengthen cooperation in the areas of connectivity, security and the rule of law;

9 December 2016: The European Commission’s Questionnaire handed over to Bosnia and Herzegovina;

20 September 2016: The EU Council invites the European Commission to submit its opinion on Bosnia and Herzegovina’s application for EU membership;

15 February 2016: Bosnia and Herzegovina submits application for EU membership;

1 June 2015: Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) between the EU and BiH enters fully into force;

September 2011: Double-hatting of the Head of EU Delegation as EU Special Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, reinforcing EU’s role in the country;

15 December 2010: Visa free regime travel to the Schengen area introduced for all BiH citizens having biometric passport;

31 July 2008: BiH and the EC signed the Financing Agreement for the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) 2007 National Programme;

1 July 2008: Interim Agreement on trade and trade-related issues enters into force;

16 June 2008: European Commission and BiH signed the Stabilisation and Association Agreement and the Interim Agreement on trade and trade-related issues;

5 June 2008: European Commission presented the Roadmap setting out benchmarks for visa liberalisation;

26 May 2008: Visa liberalisation dialogue launched;

20 February 2008: Bosnia and Herzegovina signed the IPA Framework Agreement;

18 February 2008: A new European Partnership is adopted by the Council;

1 January 2008: Visa facilitation and readmission agreements enters into force;

December 2007: Following Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn’s assessment that there is sufficient agreement on reforms among BiH political leaders, the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with Bosnia and Herzegovina is initialled in Sarajevo;

December 2006: SAA Technical negotiations between the EU and BiH are successfully completed. However, the Agreement cannot be initialled and formally concluded due to lack of progress on key reforms;

November 2005: SAA negotiations between the EU and BiH are officially launched;

October 2005: The EC judges that BiH has made sufficient progress in the implementation of the Feasibility Study reforms and recommends starting SAA negotiations;

June 2004: the EU adopts the first European Partnership for BiH (amended in 2006);

November 2003: The EC produces a Feasibility Study assessing BiH’s capacity to implement a future SAA. The study concludes that negotiations should start once BiH has made progress on 16 key priorities;

June 2003: Thessaloniki Summit; the SAP is confirmed as the EU policy for the Western Balkans. The EU perspective for these countries is confirmed;

2001: First year of the new CARDS programme, specifically designed for the Stabilisation and Association countries;

November 2000: Zagreb Summit; the SAP is officially endorsed by the EU and the Western Balkan countries (including BiH);

June 2000: The European Council states that all the Stabilisation and Association countries are “potential candidates” for EU membership;

May 1999: The EU proposes the new Stabilisation and Association Process for five countries of South-Eastern Europe, including BiH;

June 1998: the EU-BiH Consultative Task Force (CTF) is established;

1997: Regional Approach. The EU establishes political and economic conditionality for the development of bilateral relations;