Kosovo and Albania intensify economic development cooperation and European integration processes
Minister Hoxhaj was received in a meeting by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Albania, Sali Berisha. On this occasion, Prime Minister Sali Berisha acknowledged the progress made in the Republic of Kosovo and the agreement signed on Friday between respective foreign ministers, Hoxhaj and Haxhinasto, in the field of consular services, a cooperation, which, according to Berisha, should be extended to all the levels of cooperation. We should have a more intensive economic and trade cooperation, said Berisha. With regards to the recent developments in Kosovo and announcements for various protests, Sali Berisha said that there should be maximal engagement to ease the tensions.
We need to do our best to ease tensions in Kosovo. This is in the interest of Kosovo and we will support Kosovo in any form and everywhere, said amongst other things, Prime Minister Sali Berisha.
Minister Enver Hoxhaj thanked Prime Minister Berisha for the support he has given the Republic of Kosovo in every aspect. Hoxhaj said that he agreed with Prime Minister Berisha that there should be better coordination in terms of economic cooperation, a more intensive trade exchange so that we have a free market both in Albania and Kosovo and that there should be more investments by Albania in Kosovo and vice versa. Hoxhaj also said that during the meeting with Prime Minister Berisha they agreed to create special groups to coordinate political and economic cooperation between the two countries.
On Friday, Minister Hoxhaj also met with his counterpart, Edmond Haxhinasto, and after the meeting both Ministers signed a Memorandum of Cooperation between the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the Republic of Kosovo in the field of consular representation.
Following the meeting both ministers held a joint press conference.
Memorandum of Cooperation in the field of consular services
The Foreign Minister of Albania, Edmond Haxhinasto, announced details from the signed agreement, which as he said, is one of 75 agreements signed between Albania and Kosovo. Todays agreement will be in the function of consular services for both countries.
This is a model that is now working between many world states in order to be as close as possible to our citizens, both of the Republic of Kosovo and of Albania, of course in those countries where Kosovo has its diplomatic representation, said Haxhinasto. He also informed that during the meeting with Minister Hoxhaj there was also discussion on the progress that Kosovo has made. We follow that progress with admiration, especially with regards to institutional consolidation, economic development and creation of a multiethnic society, of a European model, in which the rights of all communities are respected, said Haxhinasto.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kosovo, Enver Hoxhaj, said that Kosovo and Albania have an excellent political, economic and cultural cooperation, adding that for the Republic of Kosovo it is very important that this cooperation is better coordinated, especially this year, which marks a jubilee anniversary of the independence of Albania.
About the agreement signed, Minister Hoxhaj said that it will play a key role for cooperation in the consular field. Such agreements we will also sign with other countries in the region, because the Republic of Kosovo is located in the region and good neighborly relations are of crucial importance for us, said Minister Hoxhaj.
Joint economic cooperation commission
Minister Haxhinasto said that relations between Albania and Kosovo are an excellent model of cooperation, which covers all aspects of relations, with a special focus on economic cooperation. We agreed to create a joint economic cooperation commission, as soon as possible, which will direct and draft all those important issues, so that we have a higher economic volume between the two countries, with regards to use of resources, of joint infrastructure and market, which is also important, said Haxhinasto.
The Foreign Minister of Kosovo, Enver Hoxhaj, said that Kosovo and Albania will have a much better economic cooperation. He said that our markets should be more integrated and further explained the agreement to form joint commissions on economic issues, investments and legislation.
Albania supports progress in Kosovo
With regards to political developments in Kosovo, the Foreign Minister of Albania expressed his full support for the Government of Kosovo in its dialogue with Serbia and asked for the implementation of these agreements. About the developments in the north of Kosovo, Haxhinasto said that the Ahtisaari plan is the only alternative to follow. He said that the European states should be united and determined on this matter, as the Ahtisaari plan is the right path to pursue to achieve standards of coexistence.
Albanian Foreign Minister also pointed out intensification of cooperation between the two states in the field of legislation and joint European integration processes and reiterated the support of Albania in increasing the number of recognitions for Kosovo. We have a joint agenda for this objective, said Edmond Haxhinasto.
Kosovo Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhaj thanked Minister Haxhinasto for the strong support that Albania has given Kosovo during 2011 in increasing the number of recognitions. During 2011 we had a considerable and measurable progress that was a joint outcome of the respective foreign policies of Kosovo and Albania. During this year we expect that more countries will recognize the independence of Kosovo, said Minister Hoxhaj and pointed out that so far there has been a very good cooperation between the two countries in every aspect.
Hoxhaj also pointed out the need for further cooperation between the two states in the European integration processes. I commend the successes that Albania achieved over the last few years. Kosovo expects that this year there will be a major turning point for the visa liberalization, said Hoxhaj expressing his firm conviction that in this path, Kosovo will have the support of Albania.
Protest announced for 14 January
Talking about the protest announced by Vetevendosje movement, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Albania, Edmond Haxhinasto, said that Albania does not support any extremist activity in Kosovo to block roads, customs, free exchange and free movement. We consider that this is not the right way and a European spirit to solve problems. The Republic of Albania will continue to support Kosovo in all regional initiatives and other organizations, said Haxhinasto amongst other things.
Minister Hoxhaj said that the Republic of Kosovo has gone a long way to orient politics within the institutions of the state of Kosovo. For a long time we resisted Serbia in various forms. But, now, it is the state of Kosovo that is responsible to deal with relations with Serbia. Any violent behavior, any act that is above the laws and the Constitution of Kosovo, for us as Government of Kosovo, is unacceptable. It is not a European approach, said Minister Hoxhaj. He also said that citizens of Albania that head for Kosovo on 14 January do not support Kosovo. We should not imitate anyone, but should behave as a European state. Such acts, such moves are unacceptable for the Government of the Republic of Kosovo, said Hoxhaj.
Disallowing of the visit of Minister Makolli to Presheva Valley
Disallowing the Minister for Diaspora, Ibrahim Makolli, to enter Presheva, according to Minister Hoxhaj shows that the Republic of Serbia continues to be a closed country, an isolated country and a country that follows a policy of an almost cold war. For the Republic of Kosovo, the position of Albanians in Presheva and Bujanovc is crucial. Such activities by the Government of Serbia are unacceptable and we will take all the measures to ensure that that does not happen again, said Minister Hoxhaj in Tirana.
During the course of the day on Friday, Minister Hoxhaj will have other meetings with the President of Albania, Bamir Topi, the President of the Parliament, Jozefina Topalli, the Head of the Socialist Party, Edi Rama, and other political and academic personalities in Tirana.