03 Jun 2013

Too cold to handle: EU accession talks with Iceland

Steven Blockmans

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Recent opinion polls suggest that most Icelanders are against joining the EU. By the same token, however, a majority of those polled are in favour of continuing accession talks.  These results show that Iceland’s relationship with the EU is a deeply divisive issue within the country. Although no date for the referendum has been set, the new centre-right coalition may thus want to settle this matter as soon as possible. Should there indeed be a majority in support of continuing negotiations, then Iceland’s accession process will become a complicated and cool affair in the hands of an anti-EU membership coalition government.

Steven Blockmans is a CEPS Senior Research Fellow and Head of the EU Foreign Policy unit.