TOP Analysis, Prognoses and News about Greek - Albanian Relations and the Region.
Friday, March 8, 2013
EU concerns for Albania
In Brussels, the EU and Albanian delegations started the fourth committee meetings for the Stabilization Association Agreement, which evaluates the integration progress made by our country.
Top Channel has secured documents from outside the EU, in which other countries express their concerns about the January 21st concerns.
“The EU delegation will underline the importance of the proper functioning and independence of key democratic institutions, such as the parliament and the judiciary. As regards the judicial case of 21st January 2011, it will note that the prosecution has appealed the first instance verdict of the Tirana district Court and will reiterate that the proceedings of this case need to be completed through a credible judicial procedure without undue interference. This is of utmost importance for the credibility of all state institutions.”
The EU delegation will urge Albania to take the necessary measures to ensure the effective implementation of the revised Electoral Code. Particular Attention needs to be paid to ensure that the elections administration bodies perform their duties in a professional and non-partisan manner. The EU delegation will underline that the successful preparation and conduct of the Parliamentary elections in 2013 will be a cucial test for the smooth functioning of the country’s democratic institutions and cross-party commitment to reach the relevant European and international standards and therefore an essential element for Albania’s EU integration perspective, as recalled by the Council in its December conclusions.”
As regards the two laws and the Parliamentary Regulation, while the government is expected to defend their position for the referendum, the EU will underline the need of consensus between the majority and the opposition.
“Regarding the functioning of parliament, Albania will be encouraged to complete and adopt the revision of the parliamentary rules of procedure in a spirit of inclusiveness and conciliation. The parliament must be able to focus on democratic dialogue and the passing of key reforms that are essential for the European integration of the country. Strengthening the oversight and legislative functions of parliament with the full participation and parliamentary scrutinity of the opposition and through a comprehensive consulation process with all interested stakeholders is essential for the success of the country’s reform agenda.:
Five months after the October report, EU notes moderated progress in the areas of human rights and protection of minorities, equal progress in the key priority for the women and children’s rights and in the policies against discrimination of the Roma people. Regardless the fact that ALbania has voted most of these laws, the implementation remains stalled.
“With reference to shortcomings identified in the latest Commission Progress Report, it will underline the need to intensify efforts in the are of the reform, of the judiciary and strenghtne its independence, efficiency and accountability, in the fight agaist corruption and organized crime, and as regards the protection of all minorities and vulnerable social groups.”
“The EU delegation wills stress that the legislative and institutional framework for public administrations is still marked by deficiencies that need to be addressed with a view to strengthening professionalism, de-politicisation, meritocracy and transparency, and fighting against corruption. In key sectors the public and administration faces important challenges in fulfilling its tasks, including the management and follow up of assistance programmes and the implementation legislation aimed at alignment with the EU acquis. Finally, the EU delegation will welcome the establishment of the EU-Albanian PAR Special Group in July 2012, whose first meeting took place in January 2013.”
“The EU will invite the Albanian authorities to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of corruptive investigations by the Financial Investigation Unit and Joint Investigative Units with the same objective to develop a convincing track record of investigations, prosecutors and conviction sin corruption cases at all levels.
“It is essential to complete the first registration of properties with certainty of ownership and introduce a national policy for territorial planning. The processes of compensation and restitution to former owners will need to take into account of ECtHR case law.
“The EU delegation will note that the editorial independence continues to be hampered by political and business interest. It will note concern over inadequate implementation of rules for all allocation of government advertising leading to perceptions that its distribution must not be fully fair and impartian.”
Nationalist rhetoric are unacceptable for the EU, which will reiterate that such declarations should be avoided, while for the Albanian citizenship for foreigners EU will ask all decisions to be in full accordance with the liberalization visa criteria. The Stabilization Association Committee, a technical meeting level, will be held behind closed doors for the media. The Albanian party is made of 57 officials and led by Minister Majlinda Bregu, while the EU delegation has representatives from the Commission and the Council, is led by the Enlargement Director, Pierre Mirel.