Support to Accession Negotiations for Albania in Economic Chapters of Acquis (SANECA)

Project description

Title: Support to Accession Negotiations in Economic Chapters of Acquis
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Albania
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Finance and Economy (MFE)
Overall term: 2019 to 2022


The EU integration process is of key significance to Albania and an important component of Albania’s development strategy. On 27 June 2014, the European Council granted Albania the status of candidate country. In April 2018, and then again in May 2019, the European Commission recommended opening accession negotiations with Albania. The screening process was subsequently initiated. The accession negotiations have yet to be officially opened and all eyes remain focused on this key step taking place.

Accession negotiations pose a major challenge for Albania’s public administration, particularly with regard to the restructuring of its various ministries which has been ongoing since the 2017 elections. In particular, the Ministry of Economic Development has been merged with the Ministry of Finance, and today is known as the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MFE). The Ministry is tasked with addressing 12 of the 35 chapters of the EU Acquis. Tens of thousands of EU Acquis pages need to be transposed into national law, and several hundred civil servants must be involved in a coherent and co-ordinated communication process. Multiple strategies and plans of action also need to be developed and implemented. The inter-institutional Working Groups established in the scope activities of the MFE are particularly affected by high staff turnover in the course of the restructuring process. There is therefore a need for comprehensive consultation and training at the MFE, in order to be able to steer and implement the accession process at different levels and in different departments.


The capacity of Albania’s public administration to conduct EU accession negotiations in selected chapters of the Acquis covering the economy has improved.


The project concentrates on economic development and employment promotion, ensuring that selected Acquis chapters covering the economy are negotiated competently and efficiently during Albania’s accession negotiations. This will help the Albanian Government ensure that the economy is better prepared for integration into the European market. The focus remains on lending support to the MFE and is premised on two key measures: improving negotiation skills in the selected chapters of the Acquis and promoting coordination vis-à-vis accession negotiations. 

The MFE and the corresponding coordination structures will receive full technical and process-oriented support in the implementation of the task lists for the corresponding chapters.