Bundestag Set to Agree the Political Decision to Open EU Negotiation with Albania, Conditions the Start of Technical Talks

The Bundestag will give the green light to the German government to vote in favor of opening EU accession talks with Albania in October, according to a draft resolution agreed by the two largest groups – CDU/CSU and SPD.

The German parliament is expected to approve the draft resolution on Thursday, which agrees in principle with the government approach to vote in favor of Albania in the European Council in October, but also sets certain conditions Albania needs to meet before it technically starts accession talks with the European Commission.

The Bundestag resolution requires the German government:

“To approve in principle the accession talks with Albania at the European Council [meeting] on 17/18 October 2019, with the condition that the first accession Conference be held when the Federal Government finds that conditions were met […]”   

The conditions set by the Bundestag are divided according to different stages of accession talks.

The Bundestag sets two immediate conditions to be met before the European Commission and Albanian government hold their first negotiations Conference:

  1. Forming of the High Court and Constitutional Court,
  2. Approval of the electoral reform, which should include political party funding.

Several other conditions are set for later stages of accession talks. Conditions to be met before the Second Conference, in which both sides will determine the first chapters to be opened, include: implementation of electoral reform, filing of charges against prosecutors and judges dismissed by the vetting process, as well as against those involved in vote-rigging, a resolution on the war against organized crime and corruption.

Tomorrow’s decision by the Bundestag will possibly clear the way for a final positive political decision at the European Council on opening accession talks with Albania. However, technically speaking the advancement of talks in several key areas, in particular related to the rule of law, will be conditioned on country’s achievements.