Commissioner Lenarčič visits Albania to strengthen cooperation on crisis response
Today Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, is in Albania to advance cooperation on disaster prevention, preparedness and response. The Commissioner will meet with Prime Minister of Albania, Mr Edi Rama, Minister of Defence, Mr Niko Peleshi and the General Director of the National Agency for Civil Protection, Mr Haki Çako, amongst others. The meetings will address EU-Albania cooperation in the field of disaster management, but also Albania’s path towards becoming a Participating State to the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.
Janez Lenarčič, Commissioner for Crisis Management said: “The EU Civil Protection Mechanism is based on solidarity. When a disaster strikes, other states can step in to provide emergency assistance. Just last week the EU coordinated firefighting planes from Greece to assist Albanian firefighters on the island of Sazan. Given the great progress made by Albania in strengthening its civil protection capabilities, I fully support Albania joining the EU Civil Protection Mechanism as a Participating State. In this respect today I will hand over the European Commission’s pathway to join the Mechanism to the Albanian Prime Minister. Together, we are strengthening European crisis response management. Together, we can protect better and save lives.”
The EU has already been supporting post-disaster recovery initiatives in Albania. In response to the 2019 earthquake, the EU pledged €115 million for rehabilitation programmes. To date, this support has resulted in the reconstruction of 23 schools affected by the earthquake.