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Albania on track to open EU accession talks if judicial reforms adopted soon, says European Parliament rapporteur


20 May 2016


Development Policy

After a visit to Albania this week, the European Parliament's lead negotiator on Albania and S&D vice-president responsible for foreign affairs, Knut Fleckenstein MEP, invited Albanian political parties to adopt long-planned judicial reforms before the Parliament's summer break.
Following the European Parliament's approval of Albania's progress report in April, Knut Fleckenstein visited the country, together with the European Parliament's EU-Albania committee, and held meetings with the leadership of the country and civil society. He also gave a speech at Shkodra University on transforming Albanian society and engaging with young people.

Knut Fleckenstein MEP said:
"Albania is facing a crucial moment. After two years of preparations, the country must now adopt the very ambitious reforms to the judiciary which will address the most important concerns of its citizens. They will bring about a modern justice system, help to fight corruption in everyday life and create a business environment that attracts more investment.
"Albania is already well prepared for opening EU accession talks. However, first their political leaders have to put their differences aside for the sake of the country and adopt the long-prepared reforms, one of the five key EU priorities. The reforms to the judiciary have to be adopted by Kuvendi, the Albanian parliament, as soon as possible – and definitely before the summer – if Albania wants to start accession talks anytime soon. And they must start to implement the reforms immediately after.
"Finally, I also welcome the establishment of the ad hoc committee on electoral reform and look forward to seeing the results of its work."