EC recommends easing of visa regime for Albania.

By bne IntelliNews May 28, 2010
The European Commission has made a proposal for the liberalisation of visa regime for citizens from Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina travelling to countries from EUs Schengen zone. Albanians will be able to visit those countries for a short-term period using only biometric passports. The proposal is due to be evaluated by the European Parliament and the EU Council, which are expected to make the final decision this autumn. Until then the EC will continue strict monitoring of the implementation of key requirements set as preconditions for liberalisation of the regime. Albania needs to make progress in certain areas such as development of a strategy and policy to support the reintegration of Albanian returnees. The Commission also urged the government to strengthen the capacities of law enforcement and to effectively implement the legal framework for the fight against organised crime and corruption. The third and final requirement concerns effective implementation of the legal framework in the area of confiscation of organised crime assets. The EC will re-examine progress made in these areas next September, which will predetermine the final decision. EU Commissioner for home affairs Cecilia Malmstrom and EU enlargement commissioner Stefan Fule praised the work done by Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina and expressed confidence that the two Balkan countries will soon be able to fulfill all outstanding requirements. We remind that the liberalisation of the visa regime with Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro came into force at the beginning of 2010.

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