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The first joint conference in Albania of the EAR EAR and CRLDS Albania

On 11 October 2016

On the second day of EAR-AER fact finding mission to Albania a conference was organized on  “is a European Regional Approach fruitfull when it comes to Developing Economy and Employment? “

The conference was organized in the premises of  Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tirana (CCIT) by  the CRLDS with the financial support of the Flemish Government.

Attending the meeting were representatives from the Regional Council of Tirana, from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tirana, from Union of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Albania, from the Municipality of Tirana, from the Association of Regional Councils of Albania, from CRLDS Albania, from the University of Tirana (Faculty of Natural Sciences), Agency for Territorial Planning, etc.

In her opening speech, Ms. Luiza Hoxhaj, Albania CRLDS organization's president, said the objectives of the meeting, although it is important that the meeting, in a time when Albania was launched reforms of the second level of decentralization, she regionalization of the country. It also spiegoji why we have selected this format with actors such: public, private, academic and from the civil society.

 In his welcoming speech, the president of CCIT, Mr. Nikolin Jaka, insisted upon the fact that thanks to a new law, contributions of companies to the Albanian chambers of commerce and industry became compulsory. This new regulation gave the CCIs a stronger position. But it forced them also to provide with adequate services to their member–companies.Services in terms of advocacy, information and training and networking. The role of the CCI in the regional and local community was recognized and essential and the CCI were committed to contribute to the regional approach as promoted by the CRLDS and European Academy of the Regions. Given the direct impact of entrepreneurship on regional development he sees the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, organic part of this process.

EAR–AER president Mr.Neacsu, emphasized on the role of catalyst the EAR wants to play, assisting civil society and local authorities to contribute to the social and economic development of their region. EAR–AER provides inspiration and methodology to apply for national and European support with these goals as starting point.

Mrs. Ionica Oncioiu then gave an overview of the various funding programs offered by European Commission to Albania during its pre–access phase. She gave several examples of projects having been successful in other countries and in cross–border collaboration projects enabling Albanian civil society partners to contribute to the social and economic development of their region.

Mr. Louis Delcart, EAR-AER head of the Regional Development Department, gave  an appreciated lecture about the regional approach. Several topics became clear to the participants, such as the principle of the quadruple helix in regional development, in which local authorities, universities and technical colleges, business community and civil society join forces to contribute to tackle regional economic and social difficulties and to find the appropriate solutions for it.

Mr. Neacsu ended by thanking to the organisers, the CRLDS EAR–AER’s local partner in Albania, the CCI Tirana for the organisation of the conference and expressed the wish to be able to launch the first joint project with EU funding shortly.