Rama: If West Balkans Cannot Join EU, Let EU Come To Balkans | Beta Briefing

Rama: If West Balkans Cannot Join EU, Let EU Come To Balkans

Source: Beta
News / Region | 25.10.21 | access_time 19:46

Edi Rama (BETAPHOTO/STA/Nebojsa Tejic/DS)

The West Balkans' admittance into the European Union seems to be "temporarily shelved," but if the region cannot join the EU, let the 27-nation bloc bring substantial, mutually beneficial cooperation and investments to the West Balkans now, Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama urged on Oct. 25.

In an opinion piece published on the Brussels-based Politico website, Rama wrote that "the EU can set up mechanisms of cooperation that efficiently establish some of the two-way benefits of membership, without raising the indignation of those opposed to our accession."

The Albanian PM stressed that the Open Balkan initiative dovetails with this idea, and stressed that "the EU can support the region economically through its Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans, for which a few projects have already been identified." "But more must be done," Rama underscored in the piece, "especially to ensure that the region participates fully in the EU's digital and green transitions. These transitions are required for full participation in European economies, and we risk being left behind."

He went on to point out that "the EU can also help us retain our brightest minds with joint higher education programs and integration into the EU education system, so that young people can find better opportunities at home."

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