Germany takes over EU Council presidency

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 1, 2020 13:52

Germany takes over EU Council presidency

TIRANA, July 1 - Germany has officially taken over the six-month presidency of the Council of the EU on July 1.

Germany's Ambassador to Albania Peter Zingraf said in a Facebook video that the main goal of the presidency will be to face the coronavirus crisis, which according to the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, is the biggest challenge in the history of Europe.

Zingraf said that in this difficult time, Europe must be united and that such a Europe is in the interest of Albania and the Western Balkans, which have been supported by the EU member states to face the crisis by sending medical equipment and supporting vunerable groups. He also announced that assistance to Albania will continue in order to mitigate the economic and social consequences.

Ambassador Zingraf expressed his content that Germany had taken over the EU presidency at a time when Albania had been given the green light to EU accession talks. He called on the institutions to continue working to implement reforms to bring EU integration even closer.

"Formally written conditions, which were also set out in the Bundestag's decision, have been described in the country as a guide to the Albanian reform calendar. I very much wish that the Albanian institutions set ambitious goals in the implementation of these reforms. In particular, the conditions to be met before the First Intergovernmental Conference of Membership are essential to the country and should be applicable in the near future. During the Presidency of the Council, Germany will be on the side of Albania with words and deeds. I look forward to six intense months," said Zingraf.

The German presidency in the Council succeeds the Croatian one, headed by Andrej Plenkovic, during which Albania and North Macedonia were given green light to EU accession talks earlier in March.

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that Germany is "fully aware of the high expectations of European countries from the German presidency, and we are working to ensure that Member States emerge safely from the crisis, for the good of Europe and its future.

The Chancellor will present and discuss her country's programme in the European Parliament in Brussels at the next plenary session on 8 July

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 1, 2020 13:52