Albania was granted the European Union candidate status, but the launch of negotiations doesn’t appear on the horizon. The condition for this is the fulfillment of five priorities, for which the government says that it’s working intensively. An important challenge was also the creation of the National Committee of European Integration. It is now a reality and the political class of all sides has embraced it. The speaker of the Parliament of Albania, Ilir Meta talks about this challenge and other challenges that the country faces in this analysis
By Ilir Meta
Speaker of the Parliament of Albania
After being granted the candidate status, recognition of the substantial progress of our country, the launch of talks for the accession in the European Union remains the main objective of political and social interaction.
Meanwhile, the fulfillment of the 5 Priorities by Albania remains the focus of work for all public institutions in order to deliver this national objective.
As it is pointed out by the 2014 Progress Report, but also recently in the European Parliament resolution on the progress of Albania, one of our challenges was the creation of the National Committee for European Integration.
Based on the most notable experiences of the countries of the region and through a law adopted by the parliament of Albania and praised in the recent resolution of the European Parliament, we have now given life to this Committee.
The Committee will focus on expanding consensus and national interaction in relation to reforms and processes that bring Albania closer to the European Union. It also enables the participation of relevant institutions to inform the main actors and the general public in real time in relation to the progress made during the European integration process.
Through the composition of this Committee with high representatives from Parliament, Government and the main public, media, business institutions and civil society, the major objective will be to provide strategic guidelines over the process of European integration and boost cooperation between political forces, state institutions, civil society and other actors to guarantee the advancement of this process without any obstacles.
Attached to the Parliament of Albania, this Committee must and will serve as a platform which will analyze, discuss and draft recommendations and also deliver the obligations for the launch of negotiations and then it will monitor the progress of these negotiations with the EU.
This Committee will offer detailed and comprehensive analysis by the involved actors and will secure the improvement of the quality of discussion for policies of integration implemented by government institutions with civil society and other stakeholders.
The National European Integration Committee will also enable the discussion of specific issues in work groups according to the negotiation chapters, especially those issues included in the political and economic criteria.
The creation of the National Committee for European Integration is also a result of this support and precious cooperation, which I hope will intensify, in spite of the domestic economic and social dynamics of several member countries.
Albania follows a very constructive and positive regional and international policy and is a determined country in its European path. We are not a burden for the European Union. On the contrary, with the regional weight that we have, Albania’s accession in the EU, besides challenges, also brings added values by consolidating at the same time the European approach in our region.
In the light of new security challenges, the growth of stability in the Balkan and the strengthening of security indicators in our continent, becomes even more important.
The European perspective is decisive to keep our region in the path of peace and cooperation and for the success of reforms in different domains, especially those that have to do with the strengthening of the rule of law.
But, in contrast to our foreign policy, our main challenge relates to the improvement of the domestic political climate, which is often associated with pointless conflicts.
Therefore, it’s necessary to keep the work of the National Committee of European Integration away from any political interference in order to address the major challenges of our country in an appropriate manner. /ibna/