When Romania and Bulgaria joined the EU on 1 January 2007, shortcomings remained regarding judicial reform and the fight against corruption. In the case of Bulgaria, problems also remained regarding the fight against organized crime. The Commission unveiled its latest reports (February 2012) on the progress of Romania and Bulgaria in stepping up law enforcement and the fight against corruption. The Commission identifies in Romania a number of areas where “further action is needed”, while in the case of Bulgaria “stronger action” is required in a number of fields to implement the Commission’s recommendations. Even today, the countries’ civil societies remain weak and play a limited role in the system of checks and balances. Commission recommendations for each country call on civic groups to get involved in judicial and investigative oversight. and creating a framework of cooperation with civil society to monitor progress in judicial reform. According to analysts, Bulgaria and Romania had a more painful transition to democracy and a market economy, compared to the other EU newcomers.