Bilateral Relations

Country brief

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy, based on parliamentary democracy. The United Kingdom consists of four countries: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The Head of State is Queen Elizabeth II, who has been in this position since 1952.

The United Kingdom has an area of 242,495 square kilometers and a population of 66.6 million. The capital of the country is London with a population of 10.3 million. Other important cities in the country are Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Lydia, Birmingham, etc.

The British Parliament consists of two rooms, the House of Lords, with about 800 members and House of Commons with 650 members. The country’s prime minister is typically the leader of the political party or coalition of parties that holds the largest number of seats in parliament. The Prime Minister elects the members of his cabinet, who are formally appointed by the Queen. The United Kingdom is considered the fifth-largest economy in the world, referring to GDP.

The United Kingdom is a Permanent Member of the Security Council since its first session in 1946, is an EU member, but based on the June 2016 referendum results, UK will leave this organization within March 2019. The UK is one of the most active NATO members, also a member of the Commonwealth, G7, G20, OECD, WTO etc.

Overview

With changes in the early 1990s in Eastern Europe and especially with the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia, Great Britain has significantly increased its role and engagement in the Western Balkans region. Together with the United States and other European countries, the UK has a special contribution to the peace and stability of the BP region.

Great Britain has been one of the first countries to contribute to the establishment of the rule of law, respect of human rights and the establishment of clear rules of the market economy in Albania after the 1990s. Clearly determined to support the country’s aspiration for Euro-Atlantic integration into NATO and the EU, the UK remains one of the special allies in this regard.

The London Summit in July 2018, was another indication of the role and attention of UK towards the WB region. Once again, this Summit reaffirmed the engagement of the UK in terms of increasing political, economic, diplomatic and security presence in the WB countries. This Summit was a test of what Prime Minister May repeated in several occasions that “. . . by leaving the EU, the UK does not leave Europe, ” but its approach to Europe and especially to the Western Balkans will take on a new dimension.

Bilateral relations

The diplomatic relations between Albania and Great Britain were established on November 9, 1921. The British government recognized the Albanian government after November 29, 1944, but the British mission left in April 1946 due to the limitations that the Albanian government of the time regarding the movement of members of this mission. The incident of the Corfu Channel, in May 1946, marks the final termination of these relations. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were restored on May 29, 1991, through a joint communiqué of both parties.

Great Britain has consistently supported our country’s membership in NATO and the EU. Through its numerous co-operation programs it has a special contribution to strengthening the security and rule of law in the country, the qualification of Albanian youth in prestigious British universities, as well as in the British military high schools.

Exchange of high level visits, excellent functioning of parliamentary diplomacy (Albania’s Friends Group was one of the first groups of friendship created in the British Parliament after the 2017 general elections), annual exercises of the armed forces of Albanian and UK are clear indicators of a solid cooperation relationship based on the general principles governing the relations between states and the Euro-Atlantic orientation of the two countries.

Bilateral trade and investment

In the field of economic cooperation, the UK remains a modest partner. Despite the presence of British giants such as Vodafone, BP or and internationally well-known legal and financial consulting companies, the level of trade exchanges is still at a low level. Referring to the report adopted by the House of Lords of the British Parliament in April 2018, the level of exchanges (import-export) between the countries of the Western Balkans and Great Britain for 2017 was 1.045 billion pounds of exports and 316 million pounds of imports.

While the total exchange rate with Albania, for 2017 is 28 million pounds, of which 24 million pounds of exports and 4 million pounds of imports. With the work done towards the presentation of the Albanian economic offer in the field of tourism, minerals, oil, gas, metallurgy, renewable energy, etc, this trend will change. To this aim served not only direct contacts with representatives of well-known

British companies, but also business forums organized with the aim of deepening economic cooperation.

Bilateral agreements

Albania and the United Kingdom have concluded the following bilateral agreements:

1. Extradition Agreement between Albania and Great Britain signed on 22.07.1926;
2. Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom, signed on 08.05.1992, entered into force on the date of signature;
3. Agreement between the Republic of Albania and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on international road transport, signed on 09.02.1993;
4. Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation between the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Albania and the Ministry of Defence of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, signed on 22.10.1993, entered into force the date of signature;
5. Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on co-operation in the fields of education, science and culture, signed on 30.03.1994, entered into force on the date of signing;
6. Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on Encouragement and Protection of Investment, signed on 30.03.1994, entered into force on 30.08.1995;
7. Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on Air Services, signed on 30 March 1994, entered into force on the date of signature;
8.Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in the field of tourism protection, signed on 30.03.1994;
9. The contract of ownership exchange with the British Embassy, signed on 19.05.1997;
10. Agreement between the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on readmission of persons, signed on 14.10.2003, entered into force on 16.08.2005;
11. Protocol Implementing the Agreement between the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on readmission of persons, signed on 14.10.2003, entered into force on 16.08.2005;
12. Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on conducting military and training exercises and on the provisions of host country support, signed in 2003.
13. Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Albania and the Ministry of Defence of the United Kingdom of Great Britain regarding cartographic cooperation, observation and exchange of geographic materials, signed in 2005;
14. Agreement between the Republic of Albania and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on the transfer of convicted persons, signed on 15.01.2013, entered into force on 11.6.2013;
15. Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Albania and the Secretariat of the United Kingdom for the exchange of information on migration, signed on 13.3.2013, entered into force on the date of signature.
16. Agreement between the Republic of Albania and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on the abolition of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion, signed on 26.03.2014, entered into force in 2014.
17. Implementation Agreement between the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Albania and the Secretary of State for Protection of UTKGBNI referred to "Exercise Albanian Lion and Exercise Dragon Hammer 2014", signed on 5.9.2014, entered into force the date of signature.
18. Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Albania and the State Secretariat for the Department of Internal Affairs represented by the Ministry of Interior of the United Kingdom for the intensification of cooperation in the fight against trafficking in human beings and enhancement of identification , notification, referral and voluntary return of potential victims of human trafficking, signed on 4.12.2014.
19. Agreement between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Republic of Albania supplementing the European Convention on Extradition 1957, signed on 5.4.2017, entered into force on 19.7.2018.
20. Memorandum of Understanding between the General Directorate of Customs of the Republic of Albania and HMRC of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, signed on 28.2.2018, entered into force on 19.7.2018.

Within the framework of BREXIT, the following agreements are in process:

1. The draft agreement on partnership, trade and cooperation with Albania when the UK leaves the EU
2. Air Service Agreement

Postal Address

Embasy of Albania
33 St. George\'s Drive,
London SW1V 4DG

Tel / Fax

Tel: +44(0) 20 7828 8897
Fax.+44 (0) 77 8562 8137
Emergency call:
+44 (0) 75 18662630

E-MAIL

embassy.london@mfa.gov.al
consular.london@mfa.gov.al

OPENING TIMES

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