Luxemburg, 14. June 2004 Press release

Ferrero-Waldner: "Pleased at agreement on obligation to close down Bulgaria's Kozloduy nuclear power plant"

14.06.2004

Austrian initiative won wide support

Luxembourg, 14th June 2004 - "I am pleased that the accession negotiations with Bulgaria at technical level were brought to a successful conclusion today", said Minister for Foreign Affairs Benita Ferrero-Waldner this afternoon on the margins of the EU General Affairs Council in Luxembourg. "A decisive point in this respect was the agreement reached on an obligation to close down units 3 and 4 of the Kozloduy nuclear power plant. The relevant initiative came from Austria, and it won wide support", Ferrero-Waldner continued.

The Foreign Minister went on to point out that she had also raised the issue of Turkey in the discussion on the final conclusions of the European Council. "In my view, the current text fails to address the fourth Copenhagen criterion, namely the Union's capacity to absorb new members while maintaining the momentum of European integration."

Since insufficient account had been taken of this criterion, Federal Minister Ferrero-Waldner called for an addition to the final conclusions calling upon the European Commission and the EU Presidency to analyse the structural and financial consequences of Turkey's potential admission to the EU before opening accession negotiations.