In the context of the current debate on the future of the EU enlargement process, COMECE received H.E. Mgr. George Frendo OP and H.E. Mgr. Gjergj Meta, respectively President and General Secretary of the Albanian Bishops’ Conference on 3-4 February 2020. They met with high-level representatives of the EU and of the Church to exchange on challenges and opportunities for Albania’s EU integration.
The visit comes at a time when the EU is reviewing its enlargement policies and preparing for the next EU-Western Balkans Summit, to be held in Zagreb on 7 May 2020 under the Croatian EU Presidency.
The Albanian delegation met with Olivér Várhelyi, European Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement, members of the European parliament, EEAS officials and representatives of the Croatian EU Presidency. During their respective exchanges, the delegation highlighted that “the EU enlargement is not only a necessity, but a unique historical opportunity, which is in our joint political and economic interest”.
“Opening of EU accession negotiations would also mean monitoring the reforms needed to maintain the rule of law […] and foster citizens’ trust”, stated Mgr. Frendo, President of the Albanian Bishops’ Conference, during a dialogue event organised by COMECE and Konrad Adenauer Foundation.
On Monday 20 January 2020, an ecumenical delegation composed of COMECE and CEC representatives met with Mr. Andrej Plenković, Prime Minister of Croatia, articulated their support for Croatian Presidency’s efforts towards fostering the integration of countries of South-East Europe into the European Union.