National Resource Center for Civil Society in Albania: NPO Academy Lectures on EU Integration by EMA

Under the project National Resource Center for Civil Society in Albania, implemented by Partners in Albania for Change and Development in partnership with European Movement in Albania, EMA and its experts are contributing with one lecture on EU integration and role of Civil Society for each academic year of Non-Profit Organizations Academy. In this regard EMA has conducted three lectures for NPO Academy 2019, 2020 and NPO Academy 2021:

Lecture of NPO Academy 2021- This particular Session of the Academy of NPO-s 2021 was held online on March 12, 2021 due to the measures taken in Albania against Covid-19. European Union and Albania’s European integration process were the main issues covered in this session by Gledis Gjipali, Executive Director of EMA and Nirvana Deliu Policy Researcher at EMA. The key topics had to do with:  the historical background of Albania- EU relations with emphasis on 2020, as the year when the Council approved the opening of the negotiations; the Schengen area and the new elements introduced to increase the security of free movement such as ETIAS, The Visa Liberalization Suspension Mechanism as well as the temporary control of the EU internal borders; the EU enlargement process in the Western Balkans – a comparison of the process between Albania and other Balkan countries; the new EU Enlargement Methodology – the innovations presented and the advantages it brings to the candidate countries but also to the process itself making it more dynamic, more political, more comprehensive and more credible; – an introduction of the negotiating structures set up in Albania focused to the Partnership Platform for European Integration and the Discussion and Consultation Roundtables and all the methods that the civil society can get involved.

Lecture of NPO Academy 2020 – organised on 19 March 2020, online due to Covid-19 measures implemented in the country since 8 March 2020. The topic of the lecture was: “EU integration and CSOs role in this process” and was  lectured by Gledis Gjipali, expert on European integration issues, Executive Director of European Movement Albania. Topics of this lecture followed by 20 participants include:

1) The milestones of EU integration process of the country;

2) The main challenges of Albania in this process;

3) Visa liberalisation process;

4) EU funding programmes for aspiring countries and expectations of IPA III.

5) Role of CSOs in the EU integration process etc.,

 

Lecture of NPO Academy 2019 – organised on 08 May 2019 with the topic: “Role and contribution of Civil Society actors in EU integration of Albania”. This lecture was held by Mr. Gledis Gjipali and Ms. Mona Xhexhaj, experts on EU integration from European Movement in Albania.

During this session were discussed these topics: 1) Milestones of EU integration process of the country:

2) Main challenges of Albania in this process focused on main 5 priorities set by European Commission;

3)Visa liberalisation process of Albania – standards required to achieve the visa liberalisation and main developments in this field during recent years such as: European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) or Suspension Mechanism of Visa Liberalisation;

4)EU funds about Aspiring countries: IPA funds: how this instrument has been updated and changed during the years and which are the opportunities it offers to the civil society sector. Main focus was put on IPA programs where civil society and NGO-s can be engaged such as: IPA Facility Instrument or Cross-Border Programs etc;

5) Role of Civil Society in EU integration process highlighting the structures established in the process of opening of negotiations including the Platform of Partnership and creation of Negotiation Groups for each chapter of EU Acquis;

6) Role of Media in informing objectively and analysing this process having a peculiar attention on obstacles and cost-benefits for citizens and interest groups during the process of EU integration.

More than 30 participants took part in this session from national and local NGO-s in Albania.