Honorable Prime Minister,
As the saying goes, the beginning of the year is a very good moment to start new projects. But there are projects of greater importance and the task I was entrusted with at the beginning of the year is definitely an extraordinary challenge for me.
Like many Albanians and citizens from all over the world, I see 2021 as a year of hope after the year full of difficulties and drama that we left behind. I am optimistic.
Prime Minister, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for entrusting me with this task in such an important year for the Albanian foreign policy.
But I also want to thank Genti. I have a lot of respect for the work done by my ancestors, and especially for the work done by Genti under not at all easy circumstances, as a result of the artificially created obstacle with his decree. But, also in the personal aspect, I owe him very special thanks for the cordiality and professionalism that he has shown during these days by coordinating the transfer of duty.
Prime Minister, Genti, it will not be easy to replace both of you at the same time in the leadership of our foreign policy!
On the other hand, I am very aware that the work you have done makes my work here easier, as I will not have to start everything from scratch. On the contrary.
However, I would like to make clear one thing. Work is never enough and I will not be satisfied with what has been done or what my subordinates are used to doing. I want more from all, starting from myself.
And my principle in leading the ministry is: the higher in position, the more energy and working hours available dedicated to the institution from each and every one.
Though great experience is a valuable asset in an institution like this, routine becomes equally a problem when new barriers have to be overcome and new jobs have to be done, such as for instance the work with EU integration. In this regard, which is also our number one priority, I am glad the work has been intense. The Chief Negotiator must not take only the responsibilities he has taken, but also the full support from the integration department in this ministry, by being coordinated from him and accountable to him.
On the other hand, the quantitative and qualitative increase through the digitalization of services for Albanians abroad must continue at a high pace. No one should feel neglected and the incidents at our consulate in Thessaloniki or at our embassy in Athens, not only should not be repeated but should never be forgotten as a great lesson for our consular service.
I will immediately set up a working group with more experienced ambassadors to outline a series of further steps in reforming our diplomatic service and I invite you all to share your ideas.
I have learned from the Prime Minister that what we do is never enough and that there is always more to improve than to be satisfied with what we have done. Therefore, I strongly believe that this ministry should shine in every direction, because it reflects the Albanian state in the eyes of foreigners and Albanians abroad.
The successful chairmanship of the OSCE is a great lesson about how much we can do if we are properly organized, if we are properly coordinated, if we perform properly. The same should be with the Security Council, where within a year Albania will sit for the first time in its history and as I understand we have no more time to lose but start the preparations to excel in that difficult, subtle and historical mission for Albania in the UN.
I am convinced that whoever has the passion for work and the ambition to take the work further, will be in the right habitat with me in running the ministry. While those who do not have enough passion and feel complacent or unmotivated to do more should find both passion and motivation, without wasting any more time.
It is a great honor for me to take over this position and it is also a debt to the Prime Minister who endorsed me, the parliament that trusted me and surely to all the citizens who have trusted the government.
I will do the best to repay this debt with my dedication and the results of my work in this institution. I humbly ask all the directors and employees of the institution, as well as all the honorable members of our foreign service network, to do their best.
My door will be open for anyone who has an idea, request or complaint, but at the same time my decision-making will be strict in not tolerating any subjectively inflicted delays or obstacles.
I wish you all happiness and prosperity in this year that has just begun and may the joint success be the daily guide of our effort in the service of foreign affairs and European integration of Albania.