BERLIN, Oct 15 (Reuters) – German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Saturday called for an expanded European Union, telling a gathering of European social democrats that it would then be able to better pull its weight in global affairs.
Since assuming office, Scholz has made European Union expansion to include the Balkans and others nations a major plank of his foreign policy. It has taken on more urgency since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which became a candidate for EU membership early this summer.
“An EU with 27, 30, 36 states, with then more than 500 million free and equal citizens, can bring its weight to bear even more strongly in the world,” Scholz said at the congress.
The EU currently has 27 members.
“I am committed to the enlargement of the EU. That the EU continues to grow eastward is a win-win for all of us,” he said.
Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com
Reporting by Andreas Rinke; writing by Tom Sims, editing by William Maclean
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.