TIRANA, June 14, 2019 – Businesses should be aware of the obligations to abide by the Labor Code, requiring them to treat their employees fairly and equitably regardless of their gender or other characteristics, according to a Memorandum of Understanding between the State Labor and Social Services Inspectorate (SLSSI) and the Public Procurement Agency (PPA). The agreement was signed today by Ms. Reida Kashta, director of PPA and Mr. Arben Seferaj, Chief Inspector at the SLSSI.
The signing ceremony was also attended by Deputy Minister of Finance and Economy, Mr. Erjon Luçi, and the World Bank Country Manager in Albania, Ms. Maryam Salim.
The World Bank and the French Development Agency have been strongly committed to fostering corporate responsibility and support the Albanian government's agenda in this regard.
During the ceremony, Deputy Minister Luçi thanked the World Bank for supporting this initiative and stressed the challenge of empowering women and girls, not merely gender equality.
"Empowering women and girls has great economic potential that we should use, but also creates opportunities. This relates not only to gender differences, but extends to the society as a whole - including people in need. Their empowerment is key for poverty reduction and welfare growth,", said Mr. Luçi, adding that special attention should be paid to the implementation of concrete measures.
"Through this Memorandum of Understanding, the Albanian government is sending a strong signal that to do business with the state, employers need to ensure that they are following the law and treating their workers equally. Greater diversity in the Albanian labor market would bring enormous economic gains," said Maryam Salim, World Bank Country Manager in Albania.
The Chief Inspector, Mr. Arben Seferaj, acknowledged the cooperation with the PPA, stating: "the self-declaration by businesses, guaranteeing that they will implement legal provisions in labor relations - namely the protection of the right to employment against any form of discrimination, the right for employment contracts for every employee, and the the implementation of all occupational safety and health measures, especially for vulnerable groups - will have a direct impact on employment relationships for each employee. "
Reida Kashta, Director of the PPA, added:" the use of public procurement legislation and, in this case, standard bidding documents, as an instrument to promote and ensure the enforcement of legal obligations provided for by legislation in other areas, once again demonstrates the great importance of the public procurement process and its inclusive nature