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.
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TIRANA, March 27, 2015 – Patrizio Pagano, the new Executive Director, representing Albania in the World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors, visited the country from March 24-27, 2015. The purpo... Show More +se of the visit was to meet with high level authorities to assure them of continuous cooperation and support for Albania’s efforts to enhance growth, reduce poverty and increase shared prosperity. He discussed Government priorities and the World Bank Group’s support under its upcoming Country Partnership Framework (CPF) for the period 2015-2019. Over the last year, the World Bank Group Board has approved several important operations in support of Albania’s reforms with a few more expected to be presented for approval in the coming weeks.Mr. Pagano met with Prime Minister Edi Rama, Speaker of the Parliament Ilir Meta, Minister of Finance Shkëlqim Cani, other members of government, Governor of the Bank of Albania, head of the opposition and Mayor of Tirana Lulzim Basha, as well as representatives from civil society, development partners and media.In his meeting with Prime Minister Rama, Mr. Pagano praised the government’s reform agenda and the emerging good results, and expressed his support for the government’s efforts focusing on Albania’s comparative advantages, finding new sources of growth, and creating an environment conducive to investment and job creation. He also expressed his satisfaction for the dynamic collaboration between the government and the World Bank Group resulting in the timely preparation of programs and knowledge sharing in support of reforms necessary to achieve these ambitious objectives. Mr. Pagano listened to the Government’s views about challenges ahead and assured strong support of the WBG in the context of the new Country Partnership Framework.“I am impressed with the drive towards transformational changes demonstrated by the government in pursuing reform agenda in the country. Some of the reforms such as in energy and pensions are showing encouraging results, and I look forward to seeing more positive impact during the implementation of the upcoming World Bank Group Country Partnership Framework”, said Patrizio Pagano, Executive Director representing Albania in the World Bank Group’s Board.Mr. Pagano also exchanged views on Albania’s short to mid-term challenges with the opposition and development partners. He underscored the importance of maintaining active dialogue and consultations to support the country’s continued progress.Mr. Pagano participated in the signing ceremony of the recently approved Health System Improvement project, and expressed his satisfaction for the contribution to the improvement of health services and coverage.During his visit to two hydro-powers in North Albania, Vau i Dejes and Koman, Mr. Pagano was briefed on the important measures taken to ensure sustainable energy supply for the population and the economy which are supported by the new project on Power sector recovery. During his visit Mr. Pagano was accompanied by Ms. Tahseen Sayed, Country Manager for Albania. Show Less -
IBRD Loan: US $80.0 million equivalent Terms: Maturity = 22.5 years, Grace = 7 yearsProject ID: P132982Project Description: The objectives of the project are to maintain the condition and im... Show More +prove the safety of the primary road and primary-secondary road networks, and strengthen sustainable and efficient road asset management and safety practices, for the benefit of road users.For more information, please visit here: http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P132982?lang=en Show Less -
Special Financing: Public Finance Policy Based Guarantee: US $226.7 million equivalentTerms: Maturity = 10 yearsProject ID: P149765Project Description: This objective of the project is to support stre... Show More +ngthening public financial management to address arrears and tax, pension and energy sector reforms to improve fiscal sustainability.For more information, please visit here: http://worldbank.org/en/country/albania Show Less -
WASHINGTON, March 25, 2015— The World Bank Group today announced the debarment of R&T sh.p.k. for a period of 24 months following the company’s acknowledgment of fraudulent practices in relation t... Show More +he World Bank-financed Social Services Delivery Project in the Republic of Albania.The sanction is part of a Negotiated Resolution Agreement under which the company acknowledged its fraudulent conduct. An investigation by the World Bank Integrity Vice Presidency revealed that R&T sh.p.k. submitted a false Manufacturer’s Authorization Form to win a bid for an equipment procurement contract in 2012.Under the Agreement, R&T sh.p.k. commits to cooperating with the World Bank Integrity Vice Presidency as well as adopting a compliance program that meets World Bank compliance principles.The debarment of R&T sh.p.k. qualifies for cross-debarment by other MDBs under the Agreement of Mutual Recognition of Debarments that was signed on April 9, 2010. Show Less -
Dear Minister Cani,Dear Minister Beqaj,Representatives of Ministries of Finance and Health,Ladies and Gentlemen!I am delighted to be here with you today at the signing ceremony of the Albanian Health ... Show More +System Improvement Project. Project signing is a moment of gratification as it is the culmination of a long preparation process and is the first step towards implementation and delivering results for the people of the country. However, today’s signing is of special significance for two reasons: it’s the first project being signed between the Government of Albania and the World Bank in 2015; and it’s the first project being signed in the presence of Mr. Patrizio Pagani, Executive Director in the World Bank Board, who is on his maiden visit to Albania.I would like to thank Mr. Pagani for participating in this event and sharing this fruit of our partnership with Albania. At the outset, I would like to express my deep appreciation to the Minister of Health for his leadership in stewarding reforms in the health sector, and for his personal championship which enabled us to reach this stage. It is not often that we see the Minister of Health personally engaged and leading technical discussions. Thank you, Mr. Minister!The World Bank is Albania’s longstanding partner. Our over two decades of engagement has included diverse sectors, including health, and with good results in many areas. We remain strongly committed to support Albania in its goal of accelerated and inclusive growth, which would contribute to reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity for the citizens of the country. As you may know, we are currently finalizing the World Bank Group’s new Country Partnership Framework for Albania which will define our next five year program of support.One of the key areas under this upcoming new partnership framework is our enhanced support for Government reforms aimed at strengthening governance, equity and quality of public service delivery. We believe that this area complements and deepens the broader macro-economic and structural reforms being vigorously implemented by the Government. Improving delivery of public services is critically important. The project we are signing today is especially needed as health services touch each and every citizen’s life.Improving access, equity and quality of public health services thus translates into bringing tangible improvements in the lives of each and every citizen. The encouraging news for Albania is that health outcomes, including life expectancy, are relatively high compared with neighboring countries. However, quality of care requires significant improvements. This sector also faces governance concerns and is most associated with widespread informal payments. Public spending in health suffers from inefficiencies and inequities. Of particular concern is the weak protection of households against high out of pocket expenditures. Out of pocket payments are among the highest in the region, accounting for 55 percent of total expenditures on health. We are highly encouraged by the government’s strong commitment towards undertaking much needed reforms in several key areas, including in health financing systems, hospital services, pharmaceuticals, and expanding health coverage. Efforts to improve health care service delivery and financing are already underway.The project we signed today will support Government in its reform of the hospital sector, and the associated program to improve health financing as well as monitoring and management of services. It will also provide support to government efforts in improving equity and regional imbalances so that poor and the vulnerable are protected.It gives me great pleasure that other development partners are joining efforts to support the sector including the Swiss Development Cooperation, the Austrian Cooperation, the Italian Cooperation and Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB). On behalf of the World Bank I would like to acknowledge with huge appreciation the excellent cooperation and technical engagement of the team from the Ministry of Health, and to especially appreciate the team’s tireless preparation of this project. I also thank my team in the World Bank which supported this process with exceptional commitment, and brought expertise from various other parts of the world. I also must acknowledge the strong support of the Ministry of Finance and the continued guidance of the Minister of Finance.I wish you a successful implementation of this important project. Show Less -