Tirana region hosts EU economy ministers, PM says 'EU needs Western Balkans’ – EURACTIV.com

Prime Minister Edi Rama hosted 20 regional and European economy ministers in Tirana on Tuesday within the framework of the Berlin process and stressed that the region needs the Western Balkans as much as the EU needs them.

The Berlin summit is scheduled to take place in Tirana on October 16, bringing together regional and EU leaders to facilitate cooperation, while Tuesday’s meeting of Euro-Balkan economic ministers, held before the main summit, had 20 high-level representatives at the table. .

„The European Union needs the Western Balkans as much as the European Union needs the Western Balkans. We are here to discuss the most important topics of this process, including strengthening our economies and being included in the economic sphere of the European Union,” Rama said, adding that they are beginning to understand the strong interest of the European Union. .significance.

„In a limited moment, it’s time to think outside the box and that’s what we’re trying to do at this summit, what we feel from all the communications with our friends,” Rama added.

Ines Mucostepa, head of the Chamber of Commerce in Albania, said that 6,000 companies in the Western Balkans have met the conditions to invest in the EU.

„The epidemic, the energy crisis, the war in Ukraine have affected the regional economy, and this has seen some countries pushed out of the market. Therefore, the Western Balkans should be helped because they are rich in natural resources to implement new projects,” he said.

He said Europeans should understand the potential of the Western Balkans and a development plan should be developed to support them.

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Minister of Foreign Trade and Economy in France, Olivier Becht. He declared that the plan for the development of Europe should be done quickly.

„We need to speed up this process. The whole region needs more economy and integration…We have one goal, which is to speed up the connections between the Western Balkans and the EU countries. This will facilitate the private sector and speed up the EU membership process”, said Becht.

„Things have changed and we see with great interest that there is a very strong confidence in the EU and they are more open about the importance of the Western Balkans to the EU,” Rama added.

(Alice Taylor | Euractiv.com)

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