The 11th Subcommittee meeting on topics related to Education, Research and Innovation, Information Society, and Social Policy between the EU and Albania took place on 23 January in Tirana. Representatives from the European Commission (Commission) discussed with relevant Albanian authorities the most recent developments in these areas. The meeting was co-chaired for the EU by Mr. Alberto Cammarata, Deputy Head of Unit for Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Directorate General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations of the European Commission, and for Albania by Mr. Sokol Dedja, Deputy Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs.
The Commission welcomed the efforts made by Albania during 2019 in the field of employment and the establishment of the National Agency for Employment and Skills. The importance of sufficient human resources to deliver on its functions was underlined. The Commission encouraged the authorities to take further steps to complete the drafting and adoption of the Albanian Smart Specializations Strategy. The Commission stressed that more efforts are needed to increase the performance in Albania’s participation in the EU research programme (“Horizon 2020”) and encouraged the authorities to adopt the Law on Science and Scientific Research. The Commission commended Albania for progress on digital government and underlined the need of completing the implementation of the digital switchover. Concerning media legislation, the Commission reminded the importance of compliance with European standards. The Commission welcomed the good results of Albanian participation in the Erasmus+ educational programme and announced that the 2020 Western Balkans Platforms on Education & Training and Research & Innovation will be held in Tirana on 25-26 May.