Bulgaria and Romania officially joined the European Union on January 1, 2007.
Thus, 27 states are now members of the EU, in which, in total, more than 500 million people live. The area of the European Union since January 1, 2007 has increased from 3.94 million to 4.23 million square kilometers.
On the central squares of Sofia and Bucharest, in connection with the accession of countries to the European Union, festive events were held that gathered tens of thousands of spectators.
The accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the European Union completed the fifth stage of the formation of the EU. The next enlargement of the EU is not expected to take place until 2010 at the earliest.
The first day of 2007 was marked for the European Union by another important event – another country, Slovenia, joined the Eurozone. This country, which joined the EU in 2004, became the first of the former members of the Warsaw Pact to adopt the single European currency.
The euro has replaced the Slovenian tolar, which has existed as the national currency of the country since 1991, when Slovenia withdrew from Yugoslavia.