Albania Turkey Military Agreement

Albanian-Turkish relations were traditionally friendly due to pragmatic, geographical, historical and religious factors and the existence of a large Albanian diaspora in Turkey. During the interwar periods and cold wars, bilateral relations sometimes experienced tensions and differences of opinion due to ideological and geopolitical situations of the two countries. In a post-Cold War environment, the two nations are bound by an alliance treaty on military cooperation and other agreements in economic, political and cultural fields. Turkey is one of Albania`s main investors and trading partners and is a major donor contributing to major infrastructure investments and developments that strongly supported Albania`s accession to NATO, which was achieved in 2009. However, since the rise of Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his open ambition to extend the influence on Albania and Kosovo, relations between the two have declined, partly due to growing differences over the rise of anti-Turkishism in Albania, in particular the Gulen movement and its presence in Albania, Turkey`s growing attempt at political Islamization and Turkey`s political interference in Albanian politics. [6] [7] [8] Albanian-Turkish economic relations began in the late 1980s, following the signing of the trade agreement and the Industrial, Commercial, Technical and Economic Cooperation Agreement. [139] Following the collapse of the Albanian communist regime (1992), Turkey provided significant financial assistance to Albania, an energy supply in the form of electricity and helped Albania to become a market economy. [9] [95] [97] Turkey, which has made strategic economic investments, entered the Albanian economy through Islamic banks and invested aggressively in it, but economic relations were more limited in the 1990s, with Turkish companies in Albania facing competition from Italian and Greek companies. [69] [60] [72] Two other conventions, the Convention on mutual investment promotion and protection (1996) and the Convention for the Prevention of Double Taxation (1998), were concluded by Albania with Turkey, which defined the legal parameters of economic relations in a post-communist era. [139] Albanian President Ilir Meta on Monday approved a protocol for the implementation of a military cooperation agreement with Turkey.