Albania

Switzerland is supporting Albania in the development of a democratic society and a competitive economy with the aim of helping to advance Albania’s integration into Europe. Switzerland's support is focused on local governance, economic development and healthcare as well as urban infrastructure and energy. 

Map of Albania
© FDFA

Since the end of the communist dictatorship, Albania has made considerable progress towards democracy and a competitive market economy. A series of promising reforms have been launched and implemented, e.g. in territorial and public administration, public finance and in the energy and justice sectors. The goal of joining the EU, which is shared by many Albanians, is a strong driving force behind these reforms. In view of these positive developments, Albania was given the status of EU accession candidate in 2014, and in 2016 the EU Commission recommended initiating negotiations on membership. Albania is still confronting major challenges in fighting corruption and organised crime, and there are other hurdles to reducing poverty and unemployment, which are especially affecting rural regions, disadvantaged groups and young people. 

Themes SDC

Democratisation, decentralisation and local governance

Switzerland is supporting institutional reforms and encouraging democratisation and decentralisation. By promoting regional development and strengthening local authorities, it is encouraging civil society to play a more active role in decision-making processes. It is also strengthening mechanisms to ensure parliamentary supervision over the executive at both local and national levels. Switzerland is actively working to ensure access to good-quality local public services for all, especially for discriminated population groups such as the Roma.

State and Economic Reforms

Economic development

Switzerland is supporting sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Albania. Specifically, it is helping to strengthen the management of public finances, monetary policy and the supervision of the financial sector, thus contributing directly to stabilising the macroeconomic situation in the country. Switzerland is also helping to create jobs through targeted measures to improve the overall legal framework for private companies and in this way facilitate access to markets. A sharper focus is being placed on promoting modern vocational training that appeals to young Albanians and prepares them optimally to meet the needs and requirements of the job market.  

Private Sector Development and Financial Services

Urban infrastructure and energy

By combining measures to strengthen institutions while increasing investment at the local level, Switzerland is encouraging the provision of good-quality public services in Albania. In this context, Switzerland is active in improving urban infrastructure and increasing energy efficiency specifically in the areas of drinking water supply, disposal of waste water and collection of waste. The Albanian authorities are also receiving support in diversifying their sources of energy in order to ensure efficient and reliable energy supply throughout the country.

State and Economic Reforms

Health

On the basis of the Albania’s national health strategy for 2017–2020, Switzerland is supporting efforts to strengthen basic health services for the people of Albania. It is supporting national reforms, helping to improve management, equip medical facilities and support continuous training for health personnel. Furthermore, Switzerland is supporting preventive measures to reduce the prevalence of non-communicable diseases and efforts to raise awareness of health issues among the population, and to hold healthcare providers to account. This contributes to improving access for marginalised and vulnerable population groups to health services.

Health

Approaches and partners

The 2018–2021 Cooperation Strategy is being jointly implemented by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).  Switzerland closely coordinates its transition cooperation with the Albanian authorities, other donor countries and international organisations such as the United Nations and the European Union. All its programmes, which are mainly implemented by the SDC and SECO, incorporate the principles of good governance and equal rights.

Switzerland's key partners in Albania are:

  • National partners: ministries, city and municipal authorities, social and professional organisations, the private sector and local NGOs
  • Swiss NGOs: Helvetas-Swiss Intercooperation, Swisscontact, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Terre des Hommes, Save the Children
  • Bilateral and multilateral partners: Germany (KfW, GIZ), Austria (ADA), Sweden, EBRD, EU, Council of Europe, OSCE, UN, World Bank Group, WHO

Current projects

Object 1 – 12 of 22

Increasing the Quality of Health Services for All

15.10.2013 - 30.04.2020


Albania has the lowest public health spending in the region. Many patients bypass primary health care and overcrowd hospitals, especially in larger cities. In addition, non-communicable diseases are increasing at an alarming rate. Therefore health promotion, prevention of diseases and improved primary health care services are a top priority for the country.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Albania
Health
Health systems strengthening
Medical services
Primary health care

15.10.2013 - 30.04.2020


CHF 10'000'000



Better Planning for Albania's Government

Meeting of the Government of Albania.

01.01.2012 - 31.12.2020

Albania’s economy, public finance, and debt remain areas of concern as the government tries to keep positive growth and stability in a challenging context. Although capacities for policy and financial planning have improved, there still is a need for better performance, monitoring and integrated planning. Since 2005 a group of donors including Switzerland introduced the Integrated Planning System, a tool that aids the government in strategy planning while observing budget constraints.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Albania
Governance
Decentralisation
Public finance management

01.01.2012 - 31.12.2020


CHF 1'375'000



Strengthening regional cooperation on migration in the Western Balkans

01.01.2020 - 31.12.2027

In light of diversifying migration patterns and challenges with increasing regional dimensions, the migration policy priorities of Western Balkan governments are changing and the relevance of regional dialogue, coordination and cooperation is growing. This proposal seeks to promote coherent and effective regional governance of migration in all its multifaceted dimensions contributing to greater social cohesion and regional integration in the Western Balkans.


LëvizAlbania

01.07.2019 - 30.06.2023

Albania is at a critical juncture in its democratisation process and low level of civic engagement in the society does not aid. Challenging the status quo, LëvizAlbania empowers actors in the civic space (citizens, interest groups, CSOs, media etc.) to be drivers of change and pressure the government to take action benefiting the Albanian citizens. It complements SDCs extensive past and present work of institutional transformations of local level government.


Skills for Jobs

01.05.2019 - 30.06.2023

Lack of market-relevant skills is still an obstacle to Albania’s economic development and to reduce (youth) unemployment. The project is supporting the government to address this by reforming the vocational education and training (VET) system. Private sector will continue to play a bigger role in VET definition and provision. Already more than half of all VET students and 10% of all (short term) trainees will have access to improved and labour-market oriented skills development enhancing their prospects for a decent job and increased income.


Health for All Programme (HAP)

01.04.2019 - 31.03.2023

The Government of Albania is undertaking a reform to increase the quality and efficiency of public health services to respond to the increasing burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The project will support the elaboration of a primary health care strategy, health workforce management and quality improvement measures of service delivery for a better management of NCDs at primary health care. The aim is a higher satisfaction of users and a better health status of people covered.


Regional Housing Program (RHP)

01.03.2019 - 31.12.2021

Switzerland participates in the Regional Housing Programme which is a joint initiative by Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and Croatia. The aim is to contribute to the resolution of the protracted displacement situation of the most vulnerable refugees and displaced persons following the 1991-1995 conflicts on the territory of former Yugoslavia. RHP is expected to provide 11’300 housing units to 34’000 people.


Programme contribution to Brot für alle / Bread for all 2019-2020

01.01.2019 - 31.12.2020

Bread for all (Bfa), the development organization of the protestant churches of Switzerland, has aligned its mandate with the Agenda 2030. Through a network of ten faith-based organizations active in partner countries, Bfa supports disadvantaged people to access Food Security, Education and Health. It also strengthens communities in peacebuilding and conflict transformation, while furthering the social responsibility of Swiss stakeholders.


Decentralization and Local Development Program (dldp) in Albania

01.01.2018 - 30.06.2020

Selected municipalities in Northern Albania will be strengthened in managing local finances and improving their waste management process for offering better services to communities in enlarged territories. The learnings from the long term Swiss support will be transferred sustainably to national actors and will be embedded in regulations and standards at local and national level. 


Albania: PACEP (Support to Parliament and Civic Education Project)

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2022

The Albanian Parliament will be supported to enhance the performance and professionalism of its administration and improve its representative, oversight and legislative functions. Educated citizens and engaged civil society contribute toward more accountability in decision making processes and benefit from a well-functioning parliament.


Making Labour Market Work for Young People in Albania

01.11.2017 - 31.10.2021

The Albanian economy has difficulties to absorb young people entering the job market. By addressing all dimensions of employment, namely labor demand, job intermediation and labor supply, RisiAlbania project will apply a comprehensive approach to reduce the high youth unemployment (28.9% in 2016). The project will facilitate private sector growth in targeted sectors, leading to creation of 2200 new jobs, by the end of 2021. lt will contribute to 3000 young people placed in jobs and 7500 youth improved their market-oriented skills.


Strengthening Local Government Structures in Albania

01.08.2017 - 31.12.2019

The project "Strengthening Local Government Structures" helps municipalities in Albania to consolidate modern human resources management and leadership in local administration. lt supports the public administration reform of the Albanian Government in modernizing and depoliticizing public administration, thus complying with the requirements of the European integration agenda of the country. The Albanian School of Public Administration and the Academy of Political Studies will be strengthened as training providers for public administration.

Object 1 – 12 of 22