As Albania is currently without infrastructure, transport and logistics there are great opportunities for Italian companies, according to ANCE, the National Association of builders which, in coordination with the Italian embassy and ICE, the Italian Institute for Foreign Trade, organized a two-day conference on the scope for investment in these sectors. Italy is the first foreign investor in terms of the number of Italian companies or Italian-Albanian companies active in the country.
Most significant, stressed Gerardo Biancofiore, president of ANCE’s international SME (small and medium-sized enterprises), are prospects in the field of public-private partnership and concessions, systems through which the government intends to promote the development of the main national infrastructure such as transport networks (roads, rails, airports and ports), energy ( new hydroelectric plants, renewable energies, energy efficiency etc), drainage systems and waste disposal. The building of a multimodal terminal close to Tirana – with 340 parkings, 5 railway platforms and 3 tram platforms – was announced in June 2014, recalled ANCE.
It’s a public-private project, worth 41 million euros, which should serve some 220 thousand passengers by 2035. The modernisation of the road network will also benefit from a 90 million dollar World Bank loan.
Albania is “a natural bridge towards the wider Balkan region” stressed the Italian Ambassador in Albania, Massimo Gaiani. Approximately 1 billion euros in EU funds will arrive in the region in the next few years. Issues, certainly remain to be addressed. ”In order to develop more complex forms of cooperation it is crucial to boost the entrepreneurial climate, the functioning of public administration, clear and transparent rules and procedures“. The Albanian government “is highly committed to this, but there is still lots to be done with regard to the strenghtening of the judicial system”.