Greece returns to the Balkans

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times August 28, 2018 15:00

Greece returns to the Balkans

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  • Alternate Foreign Minister Georgios Katrougalos represented Greece, which participated as an observer at the informal summit of the Prime Ministers of the WB6.

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TIRANA, Aug. 28 – Greece’s Alternate Foreign Minister Georgios Katrougalos represented Greece at the informal summit of the Prime Ministers of the Western Balkan Countries (WB6) in Durres on Monday.

The main topic of the meeting was to promote regional economic integration.

In his speech, Katrougalos referred to the unwavering Greek stance in favor of the European perspective of the Balkan countries, highlighting recent initiatives to support political stability and economic co-operation in the region.

A significant example of this policy was the Prespa agreement, although Greece has also systematically developed its bilateral and multilateral relations with all the countries of the region and has made an assistance deal from its own experience with all WB EU-candidate countries.

As far as the economic field is concerned, Greece supports and encourages the policy of integration and interaction, especially in the fields of transport and energy.

Katrougalos also underlined that alongside the economic dimension of development, importance should be also paid to the social aspect.

It is not in the region’s best interest that its states’ populations remain a reservoir of cheap labor for other European countries. On the contrary, they should aim to highlight their comparative advantages in improving productivity by investing in human capital and social empowerment policies, as well as in the rights and capabilities of their workers.

Only last week, Greece emerged from the biggest bailout in economic history and is finally able to pay equal attention to the region’s political affairs.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called the day “historical” in his speech from the island of Ithaka and promised to never forget the hardships Greeks had to go through during recession and bailout.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times August 28, 2018 15:00