Albania is a middle-income country. In recent years Albania has maintained positive growth rates, despite the ongoing economic crisis. The country is facing a challenge of maintaining growth in a difficult external environment while rebuilding fiscal buffers.
Read More »
TIRANA, August 8, 2014 — The World Bank and the Government of Albania successfully completed negotiations for a $150 million Power Reform and Recovery Project.The proposed World Bank-assisted program ... Show More +will support Albania’s power sector reforms, particularly efforts to improve the reliability of the electricity supply and the financial viability of the sector. Critical infrastructure investments under the project will include sizeable financing earmarked for electricity distribution and upgrading of the transmission system.“Increased reliability and financial sustainability of the energy sector are among the most important reforms needed to stimulate economic growth and restore fiscal balance in Albania,” said Ellen Goldstein, World Bank Country Director for Southeast Europe. “A quick and fair resolution of the commercial dispute over the distribution company allows Albania to move ahead with these crucial reforms and much-needed investments in the system.”The recent settlement agreement between the Albanian Government and the Czech Utility CEZ creates a clear ownership structure in the energy sector, which will facilitate further reform and investment. The Government reform program will bring about important improvements in electricity services for Albanian customers, many of whom pay their bills while others use electricity illicitly without payment.“The Bank assisted program is a first necessary step to support Government efforts to improve quality of service to consumers, reduce distribution losses from current levels of 42% to around 20% by year 2018 and implement priority sector reforms in alignment with EU legislation” said Salvador Rivera, Team Leader for the Energy Sector Recovery Program. "It will also provide short term support for financing of power imports during periods of dry weather".The World Bank-assisted project will also support reforms in sector management, institutional restructuring, and implementation of a short- to medium-term plan for the financial sustainability of the sector. Show Less -
TIRANA, July 31, 2014 — A loan agreement for a US$10 million Environment Services Project was signed today in Tirana. The agreement was signed on behalf of the Government of Albania by the Minist... Show More +er of Finance Shkelqim Cani and on behalf of the World Bank by the Country Manager, Tahseen Sayed.The project supports sustainable land management and aims to increase communities’ incomes in erosion prone rural upland areas. It will open avenues for alternative livelihoods and promote the financial, economic, and institutional sustainability of land use and natural resources management. Capacity support will be provided to farmers, community organizations, and central and local government institutions to efficiently use EU funding.Project beneficiaries include farmers, forest associations, groups and individuals in 310 rural communes and 2,980 villages in the country, with equal opportunities created for women and vulnerable groups. The Project will contribute to the conservation of water resources and sustainability of water resources that will benefit the citizens through improved availability and quality of water and reduced flooding.The total project cost is Euro16.8 million, co-financed by a Trust Fund of Euro 7.3 million from the Swedish Government and a Trust Fund of Euro 2.2 million from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF).Since Albania joined the World Bank in 1992, a total of 82 projects comprising over US$1.8 billion of IDA credits and grants and IBRD loans have been provided to the country. Show Less -