Prime Minister Zoran Zaev says in an interview for Brussels-based news organisation “Politico” that if the EU stalls further the process of enlargement and does not start membership talks with Skopje and Tirana, it will endanger its credibility among the Western Balkans in favour of rival forces. “EU has taken a reputational hit in the Balkans and will lose more ground to rival powers if it doesn’t start membership talks with his country and Albania soon. A lot of issues were not how our citizens expected and because of that Euroscepticism increases. If the region’s journey toward the EU slows down, there is more space for other powers, Russia and China in particular. We have made so many sacrifices and achieved a lot in rather short period of time, and if the EU fails to deliver, that would be a really big problem,” Zaev said.