In Albania we focus on:
Promoting Sustainable Energy Policies and Environmentally Sound Investments. The EBRD will work closely with the Albanian authorities and the independent regulators to enhance the regulatory and administrative framework for private sector investments, particularly in the renewable energy sector. The EBRD, through its dedicated facilities, will finance energy efficiency and renewable energy projects and, in cooperation with other IFIs and commercial banks, will support the upgrading and financial viability of energy generation and distribution. Interconnection lines and gas pipeline will also be of key importance for improving competitiveness and regional integration.
Enhancing commercialisation, competition and private sector involvement in infrastructure, alongside targeted public projects. We will assist the Albanian authorities, both at the national and local level, to increase private sector involvement in transport and municipal services, including in road maintenance. Financial assistance will be complemented by technical advice, capitalizing on the EBRD's experience to successfully structure and implement PPP and concession financing. We will also work closely with the Government on advancing transition in the seaport and railways sectors.
Supporting the development of a more competitive private sector. The EBRD will continue to be a strong partner for foreign investors and for local corporates, both directly and through the Local Enterprise Facility (LEF). We will pursue an active investment policy in sectors such as agribusiness, manufacturing and services, ITC and tourism, all of which have the potential to modernise and increase value creation in the Albanian economy, which is still too reliant on imports and labour-intensive textile subcontracting.
Strengthening the financial sector and deepening intermediation. The EBRD will support the banking system in a difficult market environment with credit lines and other facilities such as the Medium Size Co-Financing Facility (MCFF). The EBRD, through a close consultation with the Bank of Albania, will respond in a timely way to emerging needs of the local financial sector.
As well as being a country where the EBRD works, Albania is also an EBRD donor. It contributes a total of €36 million in grant funding for first-loss risk cover as part of the EBRD €100 million Albanian Agribusiness Support Facility. The Facility was approved in 2015 to promote and enhance access to finance for agribusinesses in Albania.
The EBRD’s latest Albania strategy was adopted on 13 January 2016
EBRD forecast for Albania’s Real GDP Growth in 2018 3.8%
EBRD forecast for Albania's Real GDP Growth in 2019 3.9%
Overall economic performance in Albania was robust in 2017 and the economy grew by 3.8 per cent. Growth was influenced equally by private consumption and investment (in terms of contribution to growth, of 2.2 and 2.0 percentage points respectively). The construction of two major energy sector projects is driving investment, although the direct economic impact on GDP is expected to decelerate in the short term before the economy starts enjoying the operational benefits of the two projects from 2020 onwards. Average inflation in 2017 was just 2 per cent, still below the central bank’s target of 3 per cent and despite the continuation of the historically low policy rate of the Bank of Albania, at 1.25 per cent. In light of the strong positive dynamics in the economy, we are raising our 2018 forecast marginally to 3.8 per cent in 2018, with a similar rate (3.9 per cent) projected for 2019. The high level of public debt remains a significant constraint on any fiscal stimulus but credit growth is expected to continue as the health of the banking sector improves and as the level of non-performing loans declines further.