Europe Day occurs on the 9th of May every year, in celebration of peace and unity in Europe.

The date marks the anniversary of the historical 'Schuman declaration'.

At a speech delivered in Paris in 1950, Robert Schuman, the then French foreign minister, set out his idea for a new form of political cooperation in Europe, which would make war between Europe's nations unthinkable.

His vision was to create a European institution that would pool and manage coal and steel production.

A treaty creating such a body was signed just under a year later. Schuman's proposal is considered to be the beginning of what is now the European Union.

Years later, at the Milan Summit in 1985, EU leaders decided that May 9th would be declared and celebrated as "Europe Day".

The European Union continues to be the aspiration of Albania, even after nearly 30 years. However the step-by-step journey towards integration has, even to this day, proven to be a slow moving one.

In the months ahead, an important decision is expected to be made regarding the opening of negotiations with the EU.