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The 10th Subcommittee meeting on Internal Market (including Public Health and Consumer Protection) and Competition between the EU and Albania took place on 21 February 2019 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. Zbigniew Zach, Permanent Secretary for the Subcommittee at the Directorate General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations of the European Commission, and for Albania by Ms. Albana Shkurta, Deputy Minister for Finance and Economy.
The Commission welcomed the progress achieved by the Albanian authorities in the past year, particularly regarding the legislative alignment with the EU acquis in the areas of competition, consumer protection, and accounting as well as the adoption of the National Program of Community Health Care. Particular attention was given to public procurement where the Commission encouraged the Albanian authorities to further harmonise their legislative framework with the EU acquis. The Commission noted that Albania continued to make efforts to align banking supervision with international and EU standards and to address the problem of non-performing loans. In the area of state aid, the Commission emphasized the need to develop a robust enforcement record and to ensure the operational independence of the State Aid Commission. Albania was encouraged to continue making progress in the enforcement of intellectual property rights, in particular in the fight against counterfeit goods. Significant efforts are still needed to prepare for the EU system of mutual recognition of professional qualifications.