Roundtable Partnering for Accession Negotiations
The positive response on Albania’s candidacy for membership in the European Union has led the country into a new phase for negotiation preparations, which will require further support for the European integration process. In this moment, there is need to further increase knowledge of Albanian population in the integration process and on its implications in becoming an EU Member State, particularly among key target groups. The first step is to increase general understanding of the EU policies and programmes among the population at large including the close involvement and dialogue with the civil society. In this project, we will be focusing on the youth target group.
Civil society organisations can be part of the negotiation groups like in Montenegro, or be called upon to participate like in the case of Serbia. Civil society organisations themselves can form coalitions with the aim of monitoring of the negotiations process, as well as establish the mechanism of cooperation with the government and parliament. Our goal is to apply those mechanisms to the youth organisations, especially when Chapters 19 – Social policy and employment and 26 – Education & Culture.
Youth organizations are under- represented and more vulnerable, because of its comparative disadvantage with strong interest groups (PONGO, GONGO and the various industry and business sectors) who not only possess better resources and capacities to be involved in strategic reforms of EU accession process but are also more privileged and preferred by EU institutions to establish intensive contacts and close cooperation
The main problems impacting the participation of civil society organizations in general, and youth organizations in particular in accession negotiations, and in policy making cycle in general are the following: (i) being small with not enough human resources or financial power to dedicate to this process; (ii) being situated in out of Tirana compounded with a lack of cooperation/networking; (iii) non- existence of specialized knowledge and connections with expert organizations and institutions in certain fields where the interest of members is important; (v) insufficient understanding of the EU accession procedures, institutional framework and / or calendar; (vi) missing access to decision makers at local, national and / or EU level; (vii) complicated and insufficiently explained legislative procedure not helped by limited public consultations; (viii) limited and inadequate communication strategy from the institutions in charge; etc.
Goal & Objectives
The project will inform, young organisation all over Albania about Accession Negotiations in general, and Chapter 19 and 26 in particular.
The project will have two main objectives:
- to inform the target group of youth on the situation where Albania is now and the Accession negotiations, the calendar, procedure, composition of negotiations teams, tasks (technical & political), coordination with stakeholders, etc.
- to explain what Chapters 19 – Social policy and employment and 26 – Education & Culture are about, why they are relevant for youth relevant and what youth can do to get involved.
Description of Activities
The project will aim to achieve its objectives by overcoming the main problems as stipulated above. It will combine desk work with a lot of field work to cover the territory all over Albania. The project will be composed by the following activities:
- Research, adaptation and preparation of the material on accession negotiation and chapter 19 and 26, and other regional cooperation / EU integration dynamics impaction youth;
- Exchange of best experience with Montenegro on Chapter 26 (Montenegro has closed it);
- Ten round tables on accession negotiations and regional cooperation / EU integration dynamics impacting youth all over Albania (in Tirana, Durres, Lezhe, Shkoder, Kukes, Pogradec, Korce, Vlore, Fier and Berat);
- Creation of network of youth organisations interested to be involved and contribute to EU integration process.
Selected Areas, Duration & Forecasted Budget
The project will cover all Albania (in Tirana, Durres, Lezhe, Shkoder, Kukes, Pogradec, Korce, Vlore, Fier and Berat.
The project starts on 1st of November 2016. The activities will take place before end of the year, and the publication after.
Cooperation and Development Institute, and Albanian National Youth Congress.
Prepared by CDI / Shtetiweb, Tirana December 2016