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Turkey belongs in Europe say Miliband, Hague and Rehn

The Foreign Policy Centre launches a new pamphlet: 'Turkey in Europe: The economic case for Turkish membership of the European Union'

Granting Turkey membership of the European Union will help to achieve European economic and energy security, it is claimed in a new pamphlet published 5th November 2008 by the Foreign Policy Centre (FPC), with the support of Business for New Europe. The publication of the pamphlet, entitled 'Turkey in Europe: the economic case for Turkish membership of the European Union',coincided with the release of the European Commission's progress report on Turkish accession to the EU.

The pamphlet, which includes prefaces by David Miliband and William Hague and contributions from Commissioner Olli Rehn , academics and business people, sets out the pragmatic economic case in favour of Turkish accession, and examines issues including: trade, economic reform, energy, investment and migration. It also examines the political challenges faced by both sides in making accession a reality.

Download pamphlet in full (1.36 megabyte PDF)

It asserts that European business needs to lead the way and emphasises that Europe's political elites must grant EU membership if Turkey meets the challenges that form part of the accession process.

David Miliband says:

"Turkey is a partner of immense promise and its reform trajectory is likely to continue as long as the EU membership perspective feels real."

William Hague says:

"If the European Union rejects Turkey, it would be a statement that the Union's future is inward-looking, fearful of the world beyond its borders… Turkey can be a bridge between Europe and the wider Muslim world."

European Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn says:

"Turkey's accession process is ongoing despite obstacles. We are committed to the process and we are honouring our commitment. …The liberalisation of services and public procurement (in Turkey) would provide new opportunities to EU companies and help generate growth and jobs in Europe… But Turkey needs to do more in order to open new chapters."

The pamphlet's editor, FPC Policy Director Adam Hug believes:

"Turkish membership signifies a choice for Europe between becoming an outward-looking union at peace with its internal diversity that prioritises the economic and security needs of its members, or an insular, almost parochial grouping, searching for an imagined cultural homogeneity. If Turkey succeeds in fully implementing the EU's accession criteria, which are the toughest requirements given to any candidate country, it will have earned the right to join the European Union."

Click on to download the pamphlet in full.

Notes to editors

1. The pamphlet, edited by Adam Hug (Policy Director, Foreign Policy Centre), contains contributions from: Rt Hon David Miliband MP (Foreign Secretary), Rt Hon William Hague MP (Shadow Foreign Secretary), Olli Rehn (EU Enlargement Commissioner), Roland Rudd (Chairman, Business for New Europe), Dr Mehmet Ugur (University of Greenwich), Prof Refik Erzan (Bogazici University), Dr Bahadir Kaleagasi (TUSIAD, the Turkish Industrialists' and Businessman's Association), Sir Julian Horn Smith (Turkish-British Business Council) and Dr Gareth Winrow.

2. The pamphlet will be launched at a seminar on Wednesday 5 November, 6.00 – 7.30 pm in the Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House (House of Commons) with keynote speakers Peter Luff MP (Chairman, Business & Enterprise Select Committee), John Peet (Europe Editor, The Economist), Roland Rudd (Chairman, Business for New Europe), and Serra Kaleli (First Counsellor, Embassy of the Republic of Turkey). The event will be chaired by Bob Laxton MP (Chair, All-Party British-Turkish Parliamentary Group).

3. Both Adam Hug and Stephen Twigg, the Director of the FPC, will be available for interviews or briefings.

For further information or briefings please contact:

Adam Hug

Policy Director

020 7729 7566

Anna Owen

Events and Research Officer

020 7729 7566