Presidenti i Republikës së Shqipërisë

Vizita e Presidentit Polak 4 scaled

Statements, Statements

Statement by the President of the Republic, H.E.Mr. Bajram Begaj in the conference with his Polish counterpart, Mr. Andrzej Duda


Today, I had the honor and privilege to welcome to Albania on a state visit, the President of the Republic of Poland, Mr. Andrzej Duda and the accompanying delegation.

I appreciate the long, friendly and fruitful conversation we had.

We mainly focused on the issues of bilateral and multilateral cooperation, Albania’s European integration, as well as new threats and challenges, coming as a result of Russian military aggression in Ukraine.

I appreciated the very good and traditionally friendly political relations, reconfirmed also through this visit of friend Duda to Tirana.

I also underlined the fact that even though our diplomatic relations were established about nine decades ago (86th anniversary), the relations between our two peoples date back at least to Middle Ages, where our national hero, Skanderbeg was at the center of these relations.

We agreed to make our contribution to further promote these friendly and cooperative relations, and despite the fact that we have no open issues, there are many other areas where more can be done.

I expressed my gratitude to President Duda for the solidarity that Poland and the Polish people showed with Albanians in overcoming the damage of the devastating earthquake of November 2019, but also during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In particular, we focused on economic and trade cooperation, which, although there have been positive developments and there is a complete legal framework, cooperation is still far from the possibilities of both countries.

I assured President Duda, that Albania is a friendly and safe environment for Polish investments, as it has a dynamic economy and has started accession negotiations with the European Union.

We appreciated the cooperation in the field of tourism, where direct flight connections between Poland and Albania have made a great contribution.

As two NATO member countries, Albania and Poland have a very good cooperation in the field of defense, at a strategic and operational level.

Our Armed Forces have served together in NATO missions, in Afghanistan and Kosovo.

I seize the opportunity to thank President Duda and the Polish government for supporting and enabling the delivery of military and humanitarian aid from Albania to Ukraine.

In light of new geopolitical developments, we appreciated the need for an even closer cooperation in the field of defense and security.

We also appreciated the very good cooperation in the field of education and science, as another important aspect of our bilateral relations.

I expressed my gratitude as dozens and hundreds of young Albanians have been educated in Polish universities. Today, they are not just former students in Poland, but bridges of friendship between the two peoples.

We agreed to encourage more exchanges between universities of the two countries.

We paid a very special attention to the cooperation within the European integration of Albania, where I expressed my gratitude for the support that Poland has given to Albania.

In particular, this support has gained an added value in the framework of the opening of accession negotiations, as well as in the framework of the Berlin Process.

I further expressed the belief that the next Berlin Process Summit, which will take place in autumn in Tirana, will have Poland’s full support.

I underlined that Poland has an important voice within the European Union, but also within the Visegrád Group (Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary).

I expressed my gratitude for the help that Visegrád Four has given to the enlargement process with Albania and the countries of the Western Balkans, including the establishment of the Western Balkans Fund, based on the model of the International Visegrád Fund.

Today, our challenges and interests are the same, and a comprehensive approach is required. In this context, I expressed my gratitude for the contribution that Poland has made to the peace and stability of the Western Balkans region.

Poland was among the first countries to recognize Kosovo’s independence.

I asked my friend Duda to use his influence on a reassessment by the Polish authorities of the general geopolitical situation in Europe and the Western Balkan region, with the aim of establishing diplomatic relations with Kosovo as soon as possible.

Beyond the high military presence of Poland within KFOR in Kosovo, in the current circumstances, this step would be of an even greater geopolitical importance.

I also asked for Poland’s support regarding Kosovo’s possible NATO membership, where the upcoming Vilnius Summit in July of this year, is a good opportunity to support Kosovo’s aspirations.

In the meantime, we paid special attention to the biggest challenge of world order and the system of our common values, which are being tested and threatened by one of the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council.

Russian military aggression in Ukraine also threatens Ukraine’s neighbors, as well as the Western Balkan region.

I appreciated Poland’s position and role in dealing with waves of refugees from Ukraine.

I expressed full solidarity to President Duda, as well as highlighted Albania’s clear positions in defense of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Albania is also playing an active role as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.

Part of our conversation were the influences of malicious third actors, who are using hybrid attacks against the countries of our regions.

We attached importance to the progress of Kosovo and Serbia Dialogue.

Last but not least, we appreciated the very good cooperation that the two countries have had in supporting each other’s candidacies.

In particular, the support of the candidacies for the United Nations Security Council.

To conclude, wishing that such visits would be more frequent and that it would not take another 20 years for the next visit of a Polish President to Albania, I thank you once again, President Duda, for accepting the invitation and coming to Tirana.

I wish you a pleasant continuation of your stay in Albania, along with the First Lady Duda, and your accompanying delegation.

Thank you! The floor is yours!