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World Bank Country Manager Mrs. Kseniya Lvovsky visits the region of Shkodra

December 19, 2011

TIRANA, December 19, 2011 – The World Bank Albania Country Manager, Ms. Kseniya Lvovksy visited the region of Shkodra.  The purpose of the visit was to see the implementation of several World Bank financed projects and deliver a lecture at the Luigj Gurakuqi University in Shkodra. During her visit she was accompanied by Mr. Lorenc Luka, the Mayor of Shkodra as well as members of project teams implemented in this region such as Lake Shkoder Integrated Ecosystem Management Project, and Education Equity and Excellence Project.

Ms. Lvovsky visited some of the investments financed by these projects including the rehabilitation of stream in Shiroka, rehabilitation of Gjuhadol cultural street, and met with representatives of the Fishermen Management Organization who benefited from new equipment financed by the World Bank.  In addition, Ms. Lvovsky observed the works for the construction of a new school in Mark Lula neighborhood and visited a new laboratory in the Faculty of Natural Sciences in Shkodra University, both financed by the World Bank.

As part of her tour to several universities in Albania, Ms. Lvovsky visited the Luigj Gurakuqi University in Shkodra where she gave a lecture for the students for the Faculty of Economics. In her lecture, the Country Manager for Albania focused on the recent economic developments in South-East Europe and the World Bank program in the country.

She noted that the economic growth of the country following the 2008 global financial crisis has been affected by a weak recovery in the EU and the deepening euro-zone debt crisis. While Albania was one of the few European countries that maintained positive - albeit slowed - growth in 2009, its current ability to respond to external shocks is complicated by an elevated level of public debt.

Moving forward, the country is facing a double challenge of protecting growth in adverse external conditions and, at the same time, rebuilding fiscal buffers, said Ms. Kseniya Lvosky, Country Manager for Albania in her lecture to students. “In doing so, it is important to strengthen social safety nets for the poorest; maintain critical investments in health, education and skills, the foundation of future competitiveness; and complete the agenda of structural reforms.  The World Bank is providing support to the Government of Albania in all these areas, including making available additional financial resources to deal with external shocks”.

Ms. Lvovksy emphasized that the key to the country's future is in the talent, energy and aspirations of the young generation.