Dutch PM Rutte: ‘Truly Concerned’ about Albanian Progress THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS - MARCH 14: Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte speaks to the public and the media as he campaigns ahead of tomorrow's general election, on March 14, 2017 in The Hague, Netherlands. Campaigning is continuing by all parties ahead of tomorrow's general election in which the right-wing Party for Freedom (PVV), led by Geert Wilders, is expected to do well. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

During a press conference yesterday of with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte confirmed that the Dutch government is “truly concerned” whether Albanian progress will be sufficient to open accession negotiations.

Rutte was asked whether the Netherlands will vote in favor of the opening of accession negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania during the upcoming European Council summit on October 17.

As regards Albania and North Macedonia, with many other countries we still are very concerned. We see with North Macedonia more [progress] than with Albania. We wonder how far they are with their progress in Albania, we are a bit more worried about that and in the coming weeks we will further discuss about it with our partners. We are truly concerned about the extent to which there have been truly sufficient progress. North Macedonia has accomplished more than Albania, and we’ll talk about that.

Last week, Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Stef Blok confirmed that Albania had not yet met the criteria to open accession negotiations, and that the government would abide by the parliamentary motion blocking the opening of the accession negotiations until sufficient progress has been made.