Lost in Implementation: EU Law Application in Albanian Legal System

Open access


Considering the growing importance of the researchers in the area of Europeanization in the candidate countries, the purpose of this paper is to analyse whether, and to what extent EU as a legal normative power has influenced Albania to approximate existing and future legislation and to ensure proper implementation. The paper argues that the Europeanization process is pushing Albania toward greater convergence with EU acquis by developing a modern legal framework. However, the paper points out that weak implementation has hampered the application of EU law in Albania due to: a) weak bureaucracy or uneven distribution of human capacities; b) the lack of an established practice of consultation with interest groups on specific draft legislation, and c) the inability to put in sound planning mechanisms and to carry out a realistic assessment. The paper concludes that effective adjustment of Albanian legal system with EU norms requires cooperation between different actors involved in the approximation and implementation process.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • 1. Bardach E. (1977) The Implementation Game: What Happens after a Bill Becomes a Law MIT Press Cambridge 1977.

  • 2. Bideleux R. Jeffries J. (2004) the Balkans: A Post – Communist History Routledge Abington.

  • 3. Börzel T. (1999) “Towards Convergence in Europe? Institutional Adaptation to Europeanisation in Germany and Spain” Journal of Common Market Studies vol. 37 pp. 573 - 596.

  • 4. Bretherton C. Vogler J. (1999) The EU as a Global Actor 2nd edition Routledge London.

  • 5. Bull H. (1982) “Civilian Power Europe: A Contradiction in Terms?” Journal of Common Market Studies pp. 149–164.

  • 6. Bushati D. (2004) “Approximation of the Domestic Legislation to the Community Acquis as a Prerequisite for the EU Integration” <http://www.westernbalkans.info/htmls/page.php?category=350&page=6.> accessed on 11 December 2016.

  • 7. Deflem M. (2008) Sociology of Law: Visions of a Scholarly Tradition CUP Cambridge.

  • 8. Dimitrova A. Toshkov D. (2007) “The Dynamics of Domestic Coordination of EU Policy in the New Member States: Impossible to Lock In?” West European Politics pp. 961-986.

  • 9. Duchêne F. (1973) “The European Community and the Uncertainties of Interdependence” In Max Kohnstamm and Wolfgang Hager (eds) A Nation Writ Large? Foreign Policy Problems before the European Community. Macmillan Basingstoke.

  • 10. Duke S. (2010) The Elusive Quest for European Security: From EDC to CFSP Palgrave Basingtone.

  • 11. Elbasani A. (2008) “The Stabilisation and Association Process in the Balkans: Overloaded Agenda and Weak Incentives?” <http://cadmus.eui.eu/bitstream/handle/1814/8447/SPS_2008_03.PDF;jsessionid=1DCFD39461303F80AFBA785FAC9CEE78?sequence=1.> accessed on 11 November 2016.

  • 12. Elbasani A. (2009) “EU Administrative Conditionality and Domestic Downloading: the Limits of Europeanization in Challenging Context” (2009) <http://www.polsoz.fuberlin.de/en/v/transformeurope/publications/working_paper/WP_02_July_Elbasani.pdf?1367706571.> accessed 18 November 2016.

  • 13. Grabbe H. (2004a) The Constellations of Europe: How Enlargement will Transform the EU Centre for European Reform London.

  • 14. Grabbe H. (2004b) The EU’s Transformative Power: Europeanisation through Conditionality in Central and Eastern Europe Palgrave Basingstoke.

  • 15. Green Cowles M. Caporaso J. Risse T. (eds.) (2001) Transforming Europe: Europeanization and Domestic Change Cornell University Press Ithaca.

  • 16. Hill C. (1993) “The Capability-Expectations Gap or Conceptualizing Europe’s International Role” Journal of Common Market Studies pp 305-328.

  • 17. Hille P. Knill C. (2006) “It’s the Bureaucracy Stupid: The Implementation of the Acquis Communautaire in the EU Candidate Countries 1999-2003” European Union Politics pp. 531 - 552.

  • 18. Kajsiu B. Bumçi A. Rakipi A. (2002) Albania – a Weak Democracy a Weak State Albanian Institute for International Studies Tirana.

  • 19. Karliuk M. (2011) “EU and Third Countries: Legal Approximation Methodology” <http://praunik.majstar.com/en/artykuly/173> accessed on 14 December 2016.

  • 20. Kellerman A. (2008) “Procedures for the Approximation of Albanian Legislation with the Acquis Communautaire” in C Stefanou and H Xanthaki (eds) Drafting Legislation: A Modern Approach. Ashgate England.

  • 21. Knill C. (1998) “European Policies: The Impact of National Administrative Traditions” Journal of Public Policy pp. 1 - 28.

  • 22. Ladrech R. (1994) “Europeanization of Domestic Politics and Institutions: The Case of France” Journal of Common Market Studies vol. 32 1994 pp. 69 – 88.

  • 23. Lazowski A. (2002) “Approximation of Laws” in Andrea Ott and Kirstyn Inglis (eds) Handbook on European Enlargement: a Commentary on the Enlargement Process. T.M.C. Asser Press The Hague.

  • 24. Leonard M. (2005a) “Europe’s transformative power” <http://www.cer.org.uk/publications/archive/bulletin-article/2005/europes-transformative-power> accessed on 12 December 2016.

  • 25. Leonard M. (2005b) Why Europe will run the 21st century Fourth Estate London.

  • 26. Lumezi A. (2013) “Resigned Official Çiço: Laws and Orders are being Ignored in the Recruitment of Staff” <http://illyriapress.com/dorehiqet-sekretarja-e-pergjithshme-e-integrimit-cico-po-injorohen-ligjet-dhe-urdhrat-ne-rekrutimin-e-stafit/> accessed on 1 December 2016.

  • 27. Magen A. (2007) “Transformative Engagement Through Law: The Acquis Communautaire as an Instrument of EU External Influence” European Journal of Law Reform pp. 361-392.

  • 28. Manners I. (1997) “The International Identity of the European Union: Its Internal Construction” presented to panel on Explaining the International Identity of the European Union convenors: Richard Whitman and Ian Manners Loughborough University UACES Annual Research Conference September 1997.

  • 29. Manners I. (2002) “Normative Power Europe: A contradiction in Term?” Journal of Common Market Studies pp. 235-258.

  • 30. Methasani E. (2009) “Civil Service and its Implications by Political Changes: the Case of Albania” 17th NISPAcee Annual Conference Budva.

  • 31. Pashaj (2010) “Civil Service Reform in Albania: The Broken Promise of De-Politicisation” M. A. in Public Policy Thesis Central European University Budapest.

  • 32. Peter B.G Pierre J. (2012) “Introduction: The Role of Public Administration in Governing” in B Guy Peter and Jon Pierre (eds) The SAGE Handbook of Public Administration SAGE Publications Ltd. London.

  • 33. Petrov R. (2006) “The Dynamic Nature of the Acquis Communautaire in EU External Relations” European Review of Public Law pp. 741-771.

  • 34. Petrov R. (2008) “Exporting the Acquis Communautaire into the Legal Systems of Third Countries” European Foreign Affairs Review pp. 33-52.

  • 35. Piontek E. (1997) “Central and Eastern European Countries in Preparation for Membership in the European Union – a Polish Perspective” Yearbook of Polish European Studies pp. 73 - 87.

  • 36. Radaelli C. (2003) “The Europeanization of Public Policy” Kevin Featherstone and Claudio M Radaelli (eds.) The Politics of Europeanization Oxford University Press Oxford.

  • 37. Sedelmeier U. (2014) ‘Europeanization’ in Erik Jones Anand Menon and Stephen Weatherill (eds) The Oxford Handbook of the European Union. OUP Oxford.

  • 38. Smith K. (2014) European Union Foreign Policy in a Changing World Polity Cambridge.

  • 39. Sotiropoulos D. (2004) “Southern European Public Bureaucracies in Comparative Perspective” West European Politics pp 405 — 422.

  • 40. Sverdrup U. (2008) “Implementation” in Paolo Graziano and Marteen P Vink (eds) Europeanization: New Research Agendas Palgrave Basingstoke.

  • 41. Vurno G. (2008) “Relations of Albania with the EU” (Paper presented in the Framework of the Project: ‘Integration Perspectives and Synergic Effects of European Transformation in the Countries Targeted by EU Enlargement and Neighorhood Policies’ Center for EU Enlargement Studies.

  • 42. Youngs R. (2004) “Engaging: sharpening European influence. In New terms of engagement” In Richard Young. (ed) Global Europe Report 2: New Terms of Engagement The Foreign Policy Centre London.

  • 43. Commission “Albania: Stabilisation and Association Report 2004” (Commission Staff Working Paper) SEC (2004) 374/2.

  • 44. Commission “Albania: 2006 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SEC (2006) 1383.

  • 45. Commission “Albania: 2007 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SEC (2007) 1429.

  • 46. Commission “Albania: 2008 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SEC (2008) 2692.

  • 47. Commission “Albania: 2012 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SWD (2012) 334.

  • 48. Commission “Albania: 2013 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SWD (2013) 414 final.

  • 49. Commission “Albania: 2016 Progress Report” (Commission Staff Working Document) SWD (2016) 314.

  • 50. Commission “Commission Opinion on Albania’s application for Membership of the European Union” (Commission Staff Working Document Analytical Report) SEC (2010) 1335.

  • 51. Commission “Preparation of the Associated Countries of Central and Eastern Europe for Integration into the Internal Market of the Union” (White Paper) COM (1995) 163 final.

  • 52. Commission Understanding Enlargement: The European Union’s Enlargement Policy Directorate General for Enlargement Brussels 2011.

  • 53. Constitution of the Republic of Albania 1998 as amended last on (2016) [138].

  • 54. Consolidate Version of Treaty of the European Union (TEU) [2010] OJ C83/53.

  • 55. Consolidate Version of Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) [2010] OJ C83/53 art 217

  • 56. Council Regulation (EC) 533/2004 of 22 March 2004 on the Establishment of Partnerships in the Framework of the Stabilisation and Association Process [2004] OJ L 86/1.

  • 57. European Council “Conclusion of the Presidency” (2003) <http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ueDocs/cms_Data/docs/pressData/en/ec/72921.pdf> accessed on 11.12.2016

  • 58. For the work of Parliament on the European Integration process of Albania in EU Law (2004) [9252] OJ 53

  • 59. For some Changes on the Law No. 8990/2003 on Environmental Impact Assessment DCM (2008) [10050].

  • 60. For some Changes on the Law No. 152/2013 for Civil Service DCM (2013) [5].

  • 61. For some changes and supplement on Parliament Decision no 166 date 16.12.2004 “For approval of the Regulation of the Parliament of the Republic of Albania” Decision of Parliament (2014) [95] OJ 189.

  • 62. For Notification and Public Consultation Law (2014) [146] OJ 178.

  • 63. For the role of Parliament on the European Integration process of Albania in EU Law (2015) [15] OJ 38.

  • 64. For some supplement and changes in decision no 584 of date 28.08.2003 of Council of Ministers “For Approval of the Regulation of Council of Ministers” as amended DCM (2015) [223] OJ 43

  • 65. For the establishment of the Network of European Integration Units and the Network of Drafting legislation in Line Ministries DCM (2015) [577] OJ 166

  • 66. Institute for Democracy and Mediation “Three “Steps” to Improve Parliamentary Dealings on EU Accession” Policy Brief no. 5 IDM Tirana 2010.

  • 67. Institute for Democracy and Mediation “Lost in Implementation: Albania’s Alignment with the EU Acquis” Policy Brief no. 2 IDM Tirana 2011.

  • 68. Stabilisation and Association Agreement between the European Communities and their Member States of the one part and the Republic of Albania of the other part – Protocols – Declaration (SAA) [2009] OJ L 107/166.

  • 69. On the Scope of Activity of the Ministry of European Integration DCM (2004) [580] OJ 65.

  • 70. On Approval of National Plan for the Approximation of Legislation DCM (2005) [317].

  • 71. On the Establishment of European Integration Units in Line Ministries DCM (2006) [179] OJ 32.

  • 72. On Approval of National Plan for the Implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement DCM (2006) [463].

  • 73. On the Protection of Public Health from Tobacco Products Law (2006) [9636].

  • 74. On approval of the National Plan for the Implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement 2012 – 2015 and determination of institutions’ responsibility for approximation of Albanian legislation with the European Union legislation DCM (2012) [486].

  • 75. On the Scope of Activity of the Ministry of European Integration DCM (2013) [946] OJ 167.

  • 76. On approval of National Plan for European Integration 2014 – 2020 DCM (2014) [438].

  • 77. On approval of National Plan for European Integration 2015 – 2020 DCM (2015) [404].

  • 78. On approval of National Plan for European Integration 2017 – 2020 DCM (2017) [12].

  • 79. 2005

Journal information
Target audience: experts in the field of Romanian Law
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 342 153 6
PDF Downloads 181 89 5