Tirana, 25 July 2022 (TDI): Chinese President, Xi Jinping congratulated Bajram Begaj, who took oath as the new President of Albania on Sunday.

In his congratulatory message, he hailed the relations between the two countries, saying that he was willing to work with the new President. Furthermore, he said he was also ready to strengthen bilateral ties and increase cooperation between the two countries.

Both countries, according to him, have worked to increase their political mutual trust, enhance policy communication, and advance their cooperation by jointly working on Belt and Road Initiative.

President Xi Jinping said he was willing to work with the Albanian President to deepen cooperation between countries in various sectors.

Moreover, he also wanted to consolidate the fruitful cooperation for the benefit of the two countries and their people.

Bilateral Relations

Albania has strong relations with China. Albania and China established their diplomatic relations on November 23, 1949. China has Embassy in Tirana and Albania has Embassy in Beijing.

In addition, the People’s Republic of China has provided economic assistance to Tirana. Albania is also part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), as China is investing in Albania under the banner of BRI.

Likewise, Albania is also a part of the 16+1 format. It includes the 16 Central and Eastern European countries plus the People’s Republic of China.

It is a Chinese Initiative to promote cooperation between China and the sixteen countries of Central and Eastern Europe.

The major Chinese investments in Albania include Hong Kong-based company China Everbright and Friedmann Pacific Asset Management’s acquisition of the concession rights of Tirana International Airport, which is now under Chinese management until 2025.

Albania’s new President

Albania’s new President, Bajram Begaj, took oath on Sunday, 24 July. He urged the political parties of the country to unite to address matters significant for the future, especially the rule of law.

Bajram Begaj is a retired military officer. He has had a long career in the Albanian Army. He resigned his post as Chief of General Staff to serve as the President of the country.

He was selected by the ruling Socialist Party and is politically independent. He received 78 votes out of 140 seats. The President in Albania has a predominantly symbolic position and is selected by the Parliament.