The Albanian Centre of Excellence to serve as a hub of experts to help the country in its EU integration JourneyOct 27, 2014
The Albanian Centre of Excellence was inaugurated today in the presence of government representatives, diplomats, representatives of international community in Albania, civil society and media.
This new establishment, part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will act as a hub for national and international experts and researchers who are willing to collaborate with the Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The center will work to strengthen Albania’s foreing policy and diplamatic service.It will serve as an “enhanced” policy planning unit, by attacting the best available expertise to provide in-depth analysis of special interest to Albania’s Foreing Policy, primarily by gathering the expertise of national and international researchers.
Mr. Ditmir Bushati, Minister of Foreign Affairs speaking at the event said: “The Centre is a response to our vision to combine the efforts of think tanks, policy centers, NGOs to help us in our primary objective which is the European Integration. Last year we had a fruitful discussion with the UN agencies reflecting the new priorities of UN to cooperate with our government. Their projects and resources are now supporting every step Albania is making towards the EU, and one of these steps is also engaging all the best expertise to contribute to a coordinated and strategic standing of Albania within the region and beyond.
The launch of the Centre of Excellence wouldn’t have been possible without the valuable support of UNDP. We would also like to invite all other potential partners to join our cause and our mission because this Centre aims at becoming a focal point of collaboration with many partners”.
Ms. Zineb Touimi-Benjelloun, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, present at the event underscored:” This initiative can grow and function as a platform for Albania to network with and to leverage spheres of influence in Europe for the benefit of Albania’s own development.I trust that this networking project will help Albania advance not only its foreign policy of peace and friendly relations, but also Albania’s increasing commitment to multilateral cooperation, UN goals and ideals and of course its EU accession”.
The Centre will also support the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to raise the profile of the country in the international arena, with particular attention to international organizations and regional initiatives. It will also make use of capacities of Albanians and others living in Europe and EU member states that not only have skills and technical expertise, but they also have the capacity to leverage influence and networks in these countries for the benefit of Albania.
The establishment of the Centre of Excellence is supported by UNDP in Albania.