Comparing Turkey to Croatia would be like comparing apples to pears, says Turkish EU minister
ZAGREB - Anadolu Agency
EU Minister Egemen Bağış says it would not be appropriate to compare Croatia with Turkey. AA photoEU Minister Egemen Bağış today celebrated Croatia’s entry into the European Union, but said it would not be appropriate to compare Turkey with the EU's new member.
“I celebrate once more our Croatian friends and neighbors. They really put forward an important effort in the eight years,” said Bağış, who attended the official celebrations in Zagreb. Croatia became the 28th member of the bloc as of July 1.
However, he said it would not be right to compare Croatia with Turkey. “This would be like comparing apples to pears. Croatia is a country with a population of 4.5 million. Turkey, however, is one of Europe’s most dynamic countries and fastest growing economies with its population of 76 million. It is a country that has the most powerful army in Europe,” he said.
Bağış reiterated that Turkey’s EU accession process was "important," adding that they would continue to focus on reforms. He said he had held talks with important contacts at the ceremony, including EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Füle, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and European Parliament President Martin Schulz.
“Following these talks we will find an opportunity to better guide the visa exemption matter, preparations concerning the fiscal policies chapter and opening of the 23rd and 24th chapters concerning political matters,” Bağış said.