FORMER PM Tony Blair today announced he is helping Albania to join the EU – a move which could see a further three million people gain the right to settle in the UK.
Mr Blair is backing the new Socialist leader of the country in his goal to join the 28-strong group of countries, something which would bring economic benefits to one of Europe’s poorest countries.
A recent survey shows one in seven Albanians live on less than £1.20 per day.
Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama said today Mr Blair would be “personally, totally and voluntarily” advising the Albanian government and helping with his “extraordinary experience and political geniality.”
Mr Blair and his team will provide advice at no cost to the Albanian government on how to modernise and implement a reform agenda.
Spokesperson for Tony Blair
Speaking at a briefing in Tirana, Mr Blair said “the big challenge with the government today is getting things done.”
A spokesman for Mr Blair said he was helping Albania join the 28 nations in the EU in part because of its proximity to the Balklands.
The spokesman said: “Mr Blair and his team will provide advice at no cost to the Albanian government on how to modernise and implement a reform agenda.
“As Mr Blair has previously said were Mr Rama to become PM he would be happy to help, as both Albania and the region mean a huge amount to him, the conflict in Kosovo having been an important period in his Premiership.
“He congratulates him on that now having happened and looks forward to working with him inthe future”
Mr Rama, who was sworn in as prime minister last month, has promised to create 300,000 jobs and reduce poverty.
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