On 7 February 2007, Nicolas Sarkozy, now President of France, proposed establishing a Mediterranean Union comprising the countries of North Africa, the Eastern Mediterranean and the south of the EU. The proposal is based on four pillars: an intergovernmental forum similar to the Council of Europe, a collective security system, co-development policies and integrated police cooperation joined to a 'common police area'.
Given that the Mediterranean Union appears at a first glance to give priority to security issues and indicates a preference for intergovernmental mechanisms to the detriment of supranational mechanisms while the development of Euromediterranean relations requires a particular boost in the economic, social and human spheres, and needs, above all, to foster intercultural dialogue, how does the Commission think that this proposal could affect the implementation of the Barcelona Process which began in 1995? Does it endorse the need to continue to push ahead with the Barcelona Process, without abandoning the multilateral and multisectoral focus which currently exists as a result of the Association Agreements signed by the EU and Mediterranean third countries, and which has been accentuated by the launch of the work of the Euromediterranean Parliamentary Assembly? What consequences does the Commission think that the Mediterranean Union proposal could have for the Turkish negotiation process?