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Minister Cerar pays official visit to Tirana: Slovenia's continued support for Albania's EU future

Tirana, 27 November 2018 – The Foreign Minister, Dr Miroslav Cerar, is paying an official visit to Albania at the invitation of his Albanian counterpart, Ditmir Bushati. The two ministers welcomed successful political cooperation between their respective countries and agreed that economic cooperation could be further enhanced. They confirmed the mutual interest in strengthening economic cooperation by taking part in the joint business conference. Dr Cerar assured his host of Slovenia’s ongoing support for Albania's EU integration.

 

Ministers Cerar and Bushati agreed that bilateral cooperation was positive also in the multilateral area, both within NATO, regional initiatives and in the context of reciprocal support for candidatures. Albania is among the target countries of Slovenian development cooperation, as part of which Slovenia supports projects aimed at making progress in EU integration efforts.

 

An important part of their talks focused on Albania’s European perspective, with Minister Cerar welcoming its progress in meeting the key priorities and obtaining the EC recommendation this year to start accession talks.

 

“This is an exceptionally important step forward, confirming the will to make progress towards the EU”, explained Dr Cerar, stating that “Albania must maintain the current momentum in the implementation of reforms and meet all EC requirements, which would open up the possibility to approve the launch of accession talks with the EU in June 2019”. Dr Cerar called for continued reform processes in all five key areas, and went on to assure Albania of Slovenia’s ongoing support. Minister Bushati provided further information on the progress in reform implementation and expressed thanks for Slovenia’s ongoing support.

 

The two ministers discussed the current situation in the Western Balkan region, with Minister Cerar advocating ITF’s further engagement in Albania and promising Slovenia’s support for the Albanian Presidency in 2020.

 

During the official visit, ministers Cerar and Bushati attended the business forum, in which 24 Slovenian and 28 Albanian companies are taking part. The forum revealed new opportunities for enhancing economic cooperation, particularly on agriculture, food production, environmental projects, infrastructure and tourism.