This morning Iceland began accession talks to join the European Union in Brussels.
According to RÚV, Mr. Össur Skarphédinsson, the Icelandic Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Stefán Haukur Jóhannesson, the Chief Negotiator for the Icelandic Negotiation Committee, and Mr. Árni Thór Sigurdsson, the chairman of the EU-Iceland joint Parliamentary Committee in Althingi met with Stefan Füle, Commissioner responsible for Enlargement and European Neighborhood Policy, and Janos Martonyi, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Össur Skarphédinsson. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
The Presidency of the Council of the European Union is presently chaired by Hungary and negotiations on four of the policy chapters began in the meeting. The chapters in question deal with public procurement, information society and media, science and research, and education and culture.
Talks were completed on two of the chapters as Iceland’s legislation meets the legal provisions required of the European Economic Community. According to the European Voice those chapters are science and research and education and culture.
Össur stated in the meeting that Icelanders are ready to begin the negotiation process on chapters 15 and 16 later in the year when Poland will hold the chairman seat in the Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
Negotiation for the rest of the 15 chapters is to be held early next year when Denmark has the chairman seat.
Stefan Füle said this is a significant event for the Union and its expansion to the Northwest.