"Albania Owes a Lot to Its Diaspora"
Albanian Daily News
Published November 27, 2017
Albania's President Ilir Meta was guest of honor and the keynote speaker at the conference held on Saturday in Cologne, the German land of North Rhine-Westphalia, under topic "Diaspora Dialogue Day".
While addressing the participants among which Vice Mayor of Cologne Ralf Heinen, Secretary of State Serep Guler, Minister of Economy and Development of Kosovo Valdrin Lluka, the mayors' delegation from Albania, the ambassadors of Albania and Kosovo and Albania's Consul of Honor Anduena Stephan, President Meta emphasized that he could not miss this event even because of the significant presence of Albanian Diaspora in this land.
President Meta said that Albania owes a lot to its Diaspora not only because of the previous traumas, but even because of the limited possibilities of the country for their support. The President said that more dialogue with the Diaspora implies a greater impact of the Diaspora into Albania's development, prosperity and EU integration. He highlighted the role that Albania's Ministry of State on Diaspora can play in this respect.
In this context, Meta also appreciated indispensable promotion of the Albanian language through common activities of the Albanians from Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Presevo Valley.
The President also listed the improved services for the Diaspora and the bilateral relations of Albania with other states for the mutual social protection of the Diaspora people like the one with Germany which has already entered into force.
He underlined that such agreements are particularly important for countries where Albanians are greater in number, like Italy, Greece, England, etc. The President appealed for more efforts so that to invert the ratio between "brain drain" with "brain gain" in Albania.
President Meta expressed his trust in the great skills of the Diaspora for a bigger success in improving the country's image, but hoping that it will be an engine of the acceleration of Albania's European integration.
Finally, the Albanian head of state praised the support that the Municipality of Cologne and Germany in general offers to Albanians living there, pointing out that the true relation is the one between cities and citizens. "We rely on Germany for Albania's European future, like Germany can rely on Albania for the Balkans' European future," concluded the President.

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