Albania moves closer to visa liberalisation

Albania has fulfilled the technical requirements needed for visa liberalisation, the EU Commissioner for Internal Affairs has confirmed.

Speaking at a press conference in Brussels on Monday Cecilia Malmstrom said: “The commission has finished the technical evaluation sent to the parliament and the council, where it is stated that Albania has fulfilled all the required criteria and made all necessary attempts to achieve visa liberalisation.”

Liberalisation would allow Albanian citizens to travel among the Schengen group of countries without the need for a passport.

Shortly after meeting Malmstrom, Albania’s Minister of Interior, Lulzim Basha, said: “For Albania, the process was not just a campaign with a begging and an end, but a continuous drive of reforms to achieve standards that would make the country worthy of EU structures.”

A decision by the EU council of interior ministers, on whether to allow Schengen zone travel for Albanian and Bosnian citizens, could come as early as October, following the commission’s recommendation.

Visas could be lifted by the end of the year.

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