Canada and Albania enjoy modest relations, and Canada supports Albania’s full integration in European structures. Since joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in 2009, Albania's chief foreign policy objective is European Union (EU) integration. Albania submitted its formal application for EU membership in April 2009, and was granted candidate status in June 2014.
Canada’s Ambassador in Rome is accredited to Albania, while a Consulate in Tirana, headed by an Honorary Consul, assists Canadian interests in Albania. Immigration and visa applications by Albanians are processed by the Citizenship and Immigration Canada office in the Canadian Embassy in Rome, whose staff members visit Albania periodically to interview candidates.
Between 2004 and 2014, Albania participated in the Canadian Military Training Assistance Program (MTAP), whose purpose was to provide language training for Albanian military officers in Canada. Canada also provides assistance to Albania in an anti-personnel mine destruction program and has contributed expertise, training and $500,000 to help the Albanian military destroy some 10,000 tonnes of small arms and light-weapons ammunition.
The Albanian Investment Development Agency cites Canada as the largest foreign investor in Albania with $810 million in stock investment, mostly in the oil, gas and mining (copper, zinc, gold and silver) sectors. Bankers Petroleum, Petromanas Energy, Stream Oil and Gas and Tirex Resources are some of the largest Canadian investors in Albania. Canada’s exports to Albania in 2013 amounted to $36.84 million, with machinery, iron and steel products, animal products and tools counting among the top exports. Canadian imports from Albania totalled $6.37 million, mainly in footwear, iron and steel products, apparel and grain.
To help protect and encourage two-way investment, the governments of Canada and Albania are currently finalizing a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA).
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