The XVIII Conference of Speakers/Presidents of Parliaments of the Adriatic and Ionian Initiative will take place in Tirana on 5-6 May 2022, organised by the National Assembly of the Republic of Albania in the framework of Albania’s one-year AII Chairmanship (from June 2021 to May 2022).


The main topic of the Conference will be: “European Integration: Western Balkans, an Added Value of the Adriatic and Ionian Region and of the European Union”.

The Adriatic-Ionian Initiative brings together the Western Balkans countries and EU member countries and is one more opportunity to bring the region closer to the European Union, both through bilateral cooperation among the Initiative participating countries and the AII-WB cooperation. Therefore, this Conference will be one more opportunity to discuss future cooperation and joint projects.

This meeting comes in a very crucial moment for Regional Cooperation in the Adriatic and Ionian area only few weeks before the EUSAIR annual Forum to be held in Tirana on May 16-18.

The Adriatic and Ionian Initiative and its Parliamentary Dimension

The Adriatic and Ionian Initiative (AII) was formally established with the adoption of the Ancona Declaration signed by the foreign ministers of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Greece, Italy and Slovenia gathered at the Summit on Development and Security on the Adriatic and Ionian Seas held in Ancona (Italy) on 19 and 20 May 2000. Today, the AII has ten members: in addition to the above, also Montenegro, Serbia, North Macedonia and San Marino. The Ancona Summit determined the basic areas of common interest, namely: economic cooperation, transport and maritime cooperation, environmental protection, tourism, culture, science, education, and the fight against illegal activities. From the very moment of the AII institution, the goal of facilitating the enlargement of the EU in the Western Balkans was clear.

The AII Parliamentary Dimension, which provides strong political support to the Initiative, takes the form of annual conferences of Presidents of Parliaments. Its chairmanship follows the rotation of chairmanship of the Government Dimension. As a rule, conferences take place in the spring, before the AII Council and the EUSAIR Annual Forum. The first Conference of Presidents of Parliaments was held on 27 April 2001 in Zadar (Croatia), while the last conference was held on April 15 in Ljubljana (online).