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Kraja Association meets Mr. Ditmir Busahtin in Washington, requests the opening of the Skje-Zogaj border crossing

On Thursday, November 30, 2017, the "Kraja" Association had an invitation from the Ambassador of the Ship in Washington H.E. Floreta Faber to celebrate the Day of the Armed Forces of Albania, where the guest of honor was Mr. Ditmir Bushati, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Albania. There, the delegation of "Kraja" Association had the opportunity to meet Mr. Bushati, where they informed him about the difficult economic situation in the Region, precisely because of the lack of state and private investments, both in the economic sector as well as in infrastructure, and immediately presented the official request for the opening of the border crossing Skje-Zogaj, where it I will enable an increase in circulation in the region of Kraja and further economic growth. Mr. Bushati said that he has knowledge about this region because he himself is from the region of Shkodër and also informs that the opening of the border point in Skje-Zogaj is in the plan of the Government of Albania for the development of tourism in the area overlooking the lake of Shkodër , in the Shirokë-Zogaj relationship and that the implementation of the plan has begun. After the Association "Kraja" asked him if it is true what the Montenegrin side declares that there is no official request from the Republic of Albania for the opening of the border point, Mr. Bushati answered that this is not true, the plan to open the point border has been handed over to the Montenegrin side and now they are waiting for the answer.

The delegation of the "Kraja" Association also met the Director of the Cabinet of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Odeta Barbullushi, where she expressed an interest in the request to open the Skje-Zogaj border crossing point and offered assistance and cooperation, and at the same time, on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, I accepted the request official

A special thanks to Mr. Ilirjan Fundo. President of Fundo Group Inc and Former Advisor to APEN & Albanian American Chamber of Commerce who made this meeting possible.





Minister, I can inform you that the branch of the Association "Kraja" in the homeland, in cooperation with the Local Community of Kraja (Ostros), have started in Kraja on 18.11.2017 the collection of a petition for the opening of this border point, with which addressed to the Government of the Republic of Montenegro.

The local diaspora here in the USA is ready to contribute with all the financial possibilities we have, to make this investment a reality. But first, we hope that you will start negotiations with the Government of Montenegro, for the opening of the Skje-Zogaj border crossing. I have to remind you that these negotiations started in 2012 between the then Government of Albania and Montenegro, but that there has been no progress in this direction.

Be sure that the impact from the opening of this border point would be immediate and quite positive on both sides of the border.

Thank you for your understanding!

WHY SHOULD THE SKJE-ZOGAJ BORDER POINT BE OPENED? Seeing the difficult situation that Kraja is going through and the continuous emigration, the opening of the Skje-Zogaj border point, we believe that it will be the beginning of a new era in the economic and tourist development of the Kraja area.

The main reasons why we think this border point should be opened as soon as possible are:

The opening of the border point Skje-Zogaj would halve the distance between Kraja and Shkodra from 40 km that is today to only 20 km. In this way, Shkodra would be the closest urban center of Kraja.

The Krevar-Ostros-Virpazar highway, which today connects the Kraja with the urban centers, is degrading every day and is quite dangerous for the residents of the Kraja, especially during the winter season. In this way, the inhabitants of Kraja would have a greater opportunity to avoid this road in special cases.

The opening of this border point means an exit from isolation, many development opportunities for the inhabitants of Kraja, and especially tourism would return to the center of attention. This border point would help promote Lake Shkodra on both sides of the border, and at the same time Kraja would turn into one of the tourist spots easily accessible by all tourists.

Most of the young people of Kraja choose Shkodra to continue their higher studies, and the opening of the Skje-Zogaj border point would enable them to return more often to their families and vice versa.

There are many Krajans who have family ties in Shkodër, just as there are many families from Shkodra of Kraja origin who live in Shkodër. And this border point would contribute so that these connections are not lost.

The opening of the Skje-Zogaj border point would reduce the long queues that are created at the Sukobin-Muriqan customs, especially during the summer.

These are just some of the reasons why the Skje-Zogaj border crossing should be opened as soon as possible. The support of this petition is the support of the Skje-Zogaj border point. Each signature of this petition is one more voice regarding this issue towards the Government of Montenegro and the Government of Albania.

It takes 1.4 km of road and an agreement between the two Governments to open the Skje-Zogaj border crossing.

This petition is an initiative of the Youth Forum of the "Kraja" association and Ostros Local Community.

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